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When Should Married Men Claim Social Security Benefits?

Author

Listed:
  • Steven A. Sass
  • Wei Sun
  • Anthony Webb

Abstract

Most married men claim Social Security benefits at age 62 or 63, well short of the age that maximizes the expected present value of the average household’s benefits. That many married men “leave money on the table” is surprising. It is also problematic. It results in much lower benefits for surviving spouses and the low incomes of elderly widows are a major social problem. If married men delayed claiming Social Security benefits, retirement income security would significantly improve. This brief focuses on the potential gains from delayed claiming and the factors that may influence claiming behavior. It then considers possible policy responses.

Suggested Citation

  • Steven A. Sass & Wei Sun & Anthony Webb, 2008. "When Should Married Men Claim Social Security Benefits?," Issues in Brief ib2008-8-4, Center for Retirement Research, revised Mar 2008.
  • Handle: RePEc:crr:issbrf:ib2008-8-4
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    Cited by:

    1. John B. Shoven & Sita Nataraj Slavov, 2012. "The Decision to Delay Social Security Benefits: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 17866, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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