Social Security benefits are a pillar of retirement income. They provide income that grows throughout retirement with cost of living adjustments and is payable for the life of the retiree and potentially their spouse. Retirees have the option of filing for their benefits at age 62, their full retirement age or delaying until age 70. This choice poses many challenges for many people. In addition taxes should play a role in the decision making process. Many people will find that their benefits are subject to ordinary income taxes. This could pledge 50 - 85% of their benefit as taxable income. In addition, your filing decision may impact your portfolio strategy. For instance, if you delay taking your benefits until age 70 you may have to take distributions from your portfolio to maintain your standard of livnig. The starting point for making any Social Security filing decision begins with downloading your Social Security benefit statement from This document will list crucial information such as your Primary Insurance Amount, your Full Retirement Age and more.

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