Social Security claiming is a complex process and when you’ve just lost your spouse it may not be the best time to be making financial decisions that can not be undone in the future.
Grief manifests differently for different people and, for some, grief directly impacts their decision making process. It’s as if the brain just doesn’t want to work, at least for awhile.
On the other hand, I’ve worked with some clients who handle grief by getting busy. They want to dive in to all their financial matters, but rushing things isn’t always the best way either.
No matter how you are impacted by grief, I highly recommend that you do not make Social Security claiming decisions on your own, and here’s why.
According to an article in a trade journal written by Social Security expert Mary Beth Franklin, an internal report published by the Social Security Administration earlier this year disclosed that agency representatives gave widows and widowers incorrect advice 82% of the time.
That’s a scary figure. So what is a person to do?
I recommend that before electing to take Social Security payments of any kind you review your options with a Certified Financial Planner® professional who can research your options with you.
Especially when you’ve just lost your spouse, relying on the Social Security representatives alone can end up costing you a lot of money.
I’ve seen the same thing happen when making decisions about when and how to take retirement benefits.
By having a trusted advisor help you through this process you can make decisions based on your unique circumstances. Everyone’s situation is different and there is no one best way for everyone.
Social Security rules are complicated and laws change from time to time. Working with a trusted advisor can help ensure you are getting every dollar you are entitled to.