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Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman
Worker Becomes Disabled Just Before Retirement
(Posted June 13, 2003)
Question 269: How does the onset of disability affect me if I'm planning to retire anyway in six months?
Answer: You should file for a disability annuity with the RRB. Even though there's a 5-month waiting period until benefits begin, there are advantages to going on disability compared to regular retirement.
First, you probably will receive a higher benefit because there is no age reduction for disability and the Tier 1 caliculation is more favorable. Further, if your condition is severe enough, you may qualify for early Medicare two years after you start to receive disability benefits.
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