The Government Changes Social Security

Paul Fair's picture

Retirement income is one of the most important aspects of a successful retirement        and the type of life-style one can enjoy throughout retirement.  One of the cornerstones for income during retirement is Social Security which, on average, amounts to about 40% of the total retirement income. Structuring the highest legal benefits available from Social Security can be important to promoting higher retirement income, especially for a surviving spouse.  

 On November 2, 2015, President Obama signed the Bi-Partisan Budget Bill.  The primary purpose of this bill was to increase the Federal debt limit.  Congress included Section 831 titled “Closure of Unintended Loopholes” which effectively phased out two powerful Social Security claiming strategies – File and Suspend, and Restricted Application.  The bill effectuates the single largest change to Social Security since the Citizens Freedom to Work Act of 2000, which first enabled most of the File and Suspend strategies that are being removed by the current budget agreement.  The bill also changes the “deemed filing” rule, which now mandates that a person claiming retirement benefits at any time after reaching age 62 is deemed to have filed for all of the benefits that they potentially qualify for.  This rule previously applied only to anyone filing for benefits before reaching their Full Retirement Age, but is now applicable to all claimants regardless of age. Some strategies are still available for a certain ages.


All options available should be carefully considered and understood before applying for Social Security, since filing may be irrevocable in many cases.  This is where a trained advisor who fully comprehends the Social Security options can help you in making critical decisions that can affect your lifetime income.

To receive a detailed explanation of the changes affecting Social Security with simple to understand examples and remaining strategies e-mail Please use “Social Security Changes and Strategies” in the subject line. A pdf file will be emailed to you. Please include your name and contact information in the body of the e-mail. 

Paul Fair is an investment advisor in Birdsboro, PA providing retirement and income solutions to clients in southeastern PA for over 25 years. Contact information: Phone:  610.478.9500                                                    Email:   website: www.