Senior Living

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Health & Spirit

Social Security Q&A: When will Medicare coverage begin if I retire at age 62?

Q: If I retire and start getting Social Security retirement benefits at age 62, will my Medicare coverage begin then too?

A: No. Medicare benefits based on retirement do not begin until a person is age 65. If you retire at age 62, you may be able to continue to have medical insurance coverage through your employer or purchase it from an ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Support from friend could effect SSI eligibility, amount

Q: Next month I'll turn 65 and, because of my financial situation, I thought I'd be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). But my neighbor told me I'd probably be turned down because I have a friend who said he might help support me. Is this true?

A: If your friend helps support you, it could have an effect on whether you get SSI and ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: How to get a disability application 'fast-tracked'

Q: I've heard there is a way for my daughter to get her disability application on the "fast track." How does this work?

A: If your daughter has one of the more than 200 impairments on the Compassionate Allowances list at www.socialsecurity.gov/compassionateallowances, her application might be "fast-tracked" for a decision. Compassionate ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Explaining how retirement benefits are calculated

Q: How are my retirement benefits calculated?

A: Your Social Security benefits are based on earnings averaged over your lifetime. Your actual earnings are first adjusted or "indexed" to account for changes in average wages since the year the earnings were received. Then we calculate your average monthly indexed earnings during the 35 years in ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Many helpful publications available on audiobook

Q: I prefer reading by audiobook. Does Social Security have audio publications?

A: Yes, we have many helpful publications you can listen to. You can find them at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs. Some of the publications available include What You Can Do Online, How Social Security Can Help You When a Family Member Dies, Apply Online for Social ...Read more

Mom left me money, but does Uncle Sam get it as repayment for my subsidy?

This week, I fielded questions about the circumstances under which people have to repay premium tax credits for health insurance purchased on the marketplaces and about Medicare coverage of dental services.

Q: My 60-year-old sister lost her $45,000-a-year job in 2014, and she and her husband bought a marketplace plan this year. They had ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: What is substantial gainful activity?

Q: What is substantial gainful activity?

A: We use the term "substantial gainful activity," or "SGA," to describe a level of work activity and earnings. Work is "substantial" if it involves doing significant physical or mental activities or a combination of both.

If you earn more than a certain amount and are doing productive work, we ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Use online tools to plan for retirement

Q: What can Social Security do to help me plan for my retirement?

A: Aswer: Social Security has some great online financial planning tools you can use to make an informed decision about your retirement. Social Security's online Retirement Planner and our online Retirement Estimator are both tools you can access at any time. These will let you ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Do I need a replacement Social Security card?

Q: I can't seem to find my Social Security card. Do I need to get a replacement?

A: In most cases, knowing your Social Security number is enough. But, if you do apply for and receive a replacement card, don't carry that card with you. Keep it with your important papers. For more information about your Social Security card and number, and for ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: Explaining different disability documents

Q: What is the difference between the disability application and the disability report? Do I have to complete both?

A: A disability application is a claim for Social Security disability benefits. A disability report provides information about your current physical or mental condition that we need to process your disability application. To ...Read more

Social Security Q&A: How do children affect SSI payments?

Q: I saw a poster that advised people 65 or over with limited income and resources to apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Next month I'll turn 65, and I thought I'd be eligible for SSI. I planned to apply until my neighbor told me I probably would be turned down because I have children who could help support me. Is this true?

A: ...Read more