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Rail Worker and Spouse Do Not Have to Apply at Same Time
(Posted September 28, 2013)
Question 1059: I worked for the railroad for 20 years and paid into Social Security at least 18 years. I decided to take my Social Security at 64 and defer Railroad Retirement. My wife is planning to take her Social Security at 62 and also defer the Railroad Retirement spouse benefit to when she turns 66 (we have a 2-year difference in ages). Once I claim my Railroad Retirement benefit at 66, can my wife wait until she is 66 to claim the spouse benefit? Or must she take her spouse benefit when I request it?
Answer: You and your wife can apply for Railroad Retirement at different times. The plan you've described make sense to maximize your benefits.
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