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Gaming Social Security

If you decide to take Social Security prior to your Full Retirement Age (FRA), can you still earn income without a penalty? Yes you can. For 2019, you can earn $17,640 and claim your full Social Security benefit. That additional $1,470 would come in handy, if you decide to pick up a part time job or turn a hobby into your "side hustle."

If you earn more than the 2019 threshold, Social Security will reduce your benefit. Your benefit will be reduced by $1.00 for every $2.00 earned over $17,640. This formula changes in the year you reach your Full Retirement Age. At that point, your benefit is reduced by $1.00 for every $3.00 earned.

Upon reaching your Full Retirement Age, your earnings do not affect your SS benefit. They become mutually exclusive. That is a nice bit of news, should you decide to jump back into the work force.

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