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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

Stop, Look & Listen: Railroad Retirement Benefits Q&A

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Early Retirement At 62 With Less Than 30 years

(Posted March 14, 2004)

Question 410: I used to work for a railroad. I left and came back several times but my total time with them was a little over 10 years. I was always told that I would be able to draw Railroad Retirement when I was old enough. I will be 59 in November and I am starting to think about retirement. My question is, how old do I need to be before I can receive a pension?

Answer: With 10 years of service, you can qualify for Railroad Retirement at 62 on an age-reduced basis. At 62, you will receive each month 75% of what you would receive each month if you wait to start receiving your benefit at age 66 (which is the "normal" retirement age for you).

Your benefits will consist of two components called Tiers.
Tier 1 will be reduced by any Social Security retirement benefit that you receive.

If you are interested in applying at age 62, you should contact the local office of the Railroad Retirement Board about three months before your 62nd birthday and file an application for benefits.

Important notice:

Answers are provided as general guidance on the subjects covered in the question and are not provided as legal advice to the questioner or to readers. Any legal issues should be reviewed by your legal counsel to apply the law to the particular facts of this and similar situations.

The law in this area changes frequently. Answers are believed to be correct as of the posting dates shown. The completeness or accuracy of a particular answer may be affected by changes in the law (statutes, regulations, rulings, court decisions, etc.) that occur after the date on which a particular Q&A is posted.

Copyright 1997-2017 Robert S. Kaufman
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