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Innovative Strategies to Help Maximize Social Security Benefits

We are updating the Innovative Strategies to Help Maximize Social Security Benefits paper to reflect legislative changes affecting certain Social Security claiming strategies. Our updated paper will launch in early 2016.

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The greatest fear of today’s retirees is not having enough money to maintain their lifestyles throughout retirement.1 What’s the greatest benefit Social Security can offer? Regular income that is guaranteed to increase over time—and continue for life.* No other vehicle can match the combination of inflation-fighting increases, longevity protection, investment risk elimination, and spousal coverage that Social Security delivers—potentially making it one of the most valuable sources of retirement income. For those age 65-74, Social Security accounts for 54% of total retirement income. It plays an even greater role as retirees age, accounting for 61% of retirement income for those 75-84, and 66% for those age 85 and older.2


1 Prudential Financial, “Financial Experience & Behaviors Among Women,” July 2014.
2 Employee Benefit Research Institute, Issue Brief #383, p. 6, February, 2013.
* Social Security taxes are just that—taxes, and convey no property or contractual rights to Social Security benefits. As a result, a worker’s retirement security is entirely dependent on the political decisions of the President and Congress. Benefits may be reduced or even eliminated at any time.