Q. My birthday is Sept. 23, 1960 so I’m 62. I am not taking my Social Security until full retirement age. Will I get the COLA increase for the age of 60 and 61?

— Retiring soon

A. Social Security recipients were excited to learn they’d be getting an 8.7% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).

Any cost of living adjustments may or may not affect the benefit amount for future recipients, depending on when you apply for Social Security, said Bill Connington of Connington Wealth Management in Paramus.

The basis for Social Security benefits is a figure called the Average Indexed Monthly Earnings, or AIME.

“To arrive at your AIME, Social Security takes the actual earnings for each year you worked and adjusts your earlier years to bring them closer to what you earned after age 60,” he said. “You will receive the cost of living adjustments if you apply for retirement benefits after age 62.”

Specifically, Connington said, you get adjustments for any years between your first eligibility and your filing date. If you claim Social Security right when you turn 62, you may not get any of those adjustments, he said.

“Here’s the bottom line: You only receive COLA adjustments if you apply for retirement benefits after age 62,” he said. “Specifically, you get adjustments for any years between your first eligibility at age 62 and your filing date. If you claim Social Security right when you turn 62, you may not get any of those adjustments.”

To understand better what to expect for your benefits, contact Social Security so it can advise based on your personal records.

Email your questions to [email protected].

Karin Price Mueller writes the Bamboozled column for NJ Advance Media and is the founder of NJMoneyHelp.com. Follow NJMoneyHelp on Twitter @NJMoneyHelp. Find NJMoneyHelp on Facebook. Sign up for NJMoneyHelp.com’s weekly e-newsletter.


By Antoni

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