Are You Age 70 or Older and Not Yet Getting Your Social Security Retirement Benefits?

July 6, 2023 • By

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Last Updated: July 6, 2023

Senior man working at laptop to apply for Social Security benefitsRetirement is not one-size-fits-all. It can mean different things to different people. Perhaps you have not applied for Social Security retirement benefits because you’re still working or are delaying applying so you can get the higher benefit. If you’re age 70 or older, you should apply now for the benefits you’re owed. Your benefits will not increase if you continue to delay applying for them because you are 70 or older.

Did you know that you can receive benefits even if you still work? Your earnings can increase your monthly benefit amount – even after you start receiving benefits. Each year that you work, we check your earnings record. It’s possible your latest year of earnings is one of your highest 35 years. If so, we will automatically recalculate your benefit amount and pay you any increase due.

You can claim your retirement benefits now. The best and easiest way to apply is with a personal my Social Security account. You can create your free account on our website. Once you create your account, you can get an estimate of how much you might receive each month based on when you want to start receiving benefits and then apply.

In your account, you can also:

  • Access our publications – like the fact sheet for workers ages 70 and up.
  • Find your Full Retirement Age.
  • Learn about benefits for your spouse and family members.
  • Apply for benefits.
  • Manage your benefits once you start receiving them.

We’re here to help you secure today and tomorrow and we invite you to learn more about applying for retirement benefits on our website. Please share this blog with your friends and family – and post it on social media.

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  1. nedra w.

    I’m 71 ages and receiving SS and still working. When I retire and receive a pension will my SS deduct amount each month.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Nedra. Thanks for your question. Generally, you can get both Social Security retirement benefits and a private pension and we do not reduce your Social Security benefits because of your pension. However, a pension based on work that is not covered by Social Security (for example, Federal civil service and some State or local government agencies, such as police officers and some teachers) may cause the amount of your Social Security benefit to be reduced.  For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions. We hope this information is helpful. 

  2. ASHOK K.

    ASHOK K CHHABRA 07 08 2023

  3. Asking f.

    If a self-employed person did not file their income taxes for a few years, which would have updated their earnings in the social security program, how long do they have to file back income and taxes so as to get earnings credits into their social security income file?

    For example, if they are short 2 years of earnings (8 credits) to make the 10 year (40 credit) minimum for social security benefits, can they catch that up?

    What if they are over 70? Can they still catch up and then file for social security benefits?

    • Ann C.

      Hi. Thanks for visiting our blog. Credits are the “building blocks” we use to find out whether you have the minimum amount of covered work to qualify for each type of Social Security benefits.  No benefits can be paid if you do not have enough credits.  Visit our Benefits Planner page to learn more information. We hope this helps.

  4. Sarala s.

    I applied for my SSI in May 2023 and till today I didn’t hear from social security office, does it take so long.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Sarala. Thanks for visiting our blog. Typically, you can expect to hear a decision on your disability claim in three to five months after you submit your application. However, this can vary depending on the nature of your disability, how quickly we obtain medical evidence from your doctor or other medical source and whether it is necessary to send you for a medical examination in order to obtain evidence to support your claim.  See our Disability Determination Process for more information. We hope this helps. 

  5. Jtgibbon

    Are there any SS benefits when your spouse passes?

    • sbc

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Jtgibbon. Thanks for your question. You are eligible to apply for survivor benefits when you reach age 60 (age 50 or over if disabled). However, there are other factors that may affect your entitlement to these benefits. For more information on survivors benefits, please visit our If You Are The Survivor webpage. We hope this information is helpful. 

  6. tammy c.

    I will be 61 in July and receive ssdi, when does ssdi change to reg social security?

    • Walt

      At your full retirement age of 67

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Tammy. Thanks for your question. When you reach full retirement age, we will automatically convert your disability benefits to retirement benefits, but the amount remains the same. Starting the month you reach retirement age, you will get benefits with no limit on your earnings. We hope this helps. 

  7. Don K.

    If I decide to start receiving my benefits at age 69.5….can I make any kind of request for retroactive payment?

    • Walt

      At your age, you can get 6 months of retroactive benefits….in exchange for losing 6 months of delayed retirement credits

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Don. Generally, we allow retroactivity up to six months for retirement benefits if you are beyond your full retirement age. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. You can also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  8. Laura A.

    I will be 70 this year on November 30th. I have not applied for benefits yet. My birth year is 1953. How much less per month will I get if I apply now instead of waiting until I’m 70.

    • DanO

    • Richard R.

      For each month you wait to receive benefits, it increases by ⅔ of 1% (8% per year).

    • David P.

      It would probably be less trouble to wait until after your 70th birthday month to apply since if you start during the year before that point you will probably not get immediate benefit of your “delayed retirement credits” earned after January of that year until,supposedly,next January. (the next year after)
      However,I started Social Security retirement payments as of the month following my 69th birthday,I still have not gotten credit for my delayed retirement credits past January of that year although as of now two Januaries have passed. Still waiting for those (5 or 6 months worth?) of delayed retirement credits

      • David P.

        Actually she can apply before her birthday month,just be sure to specify that the month desired for benefits to begin be the month after the birthday(I think you can do the application online or at the Social Security office up to 3 months before the payments are to start)

    • Ed L.

      On the SS website they have a easy to use calculator. Just type in the month or slide the arrow on the graph. It will show each month from now to November. The amount changes every 5-6 . At a certain month within that few months period the amount is the same. My bd was April , I took it in January. I think the difference had I waited till April would have been $36 . Keep in mind also benefits don’t start till followed month. My first benefit was end of February

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Laura. Thanks for visiting our blog. The best way to start planning for your future is by creating a personal my Social Security account online. With your personal my Social Security account, you can verify your earnings, get your Social Security Statement, get future estimates of monthly Social Security benefits based on your actual Social Security earnings record. and much more. 

      For further specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. You can also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  9. Alex F.

    Am 73 years old only 32 credits earned not enough to apply for retirement. But I worked 5 years in Denmark where they have a “Totalization Agreement ” with the United States. I am US citizen and would like to know how I can qualify for Social Security pension using my work credits earned in Denmark.

    • DanO

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Alex. Thanks for visiting our blog. Unfortunately, your question is a bit more complex than we can handle in this forum. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., for assistance. You can also contact your local Social Security office. We hope this helps.

  10. Kevin m.

    Need more info for us citizen that live in Canada and how cpp old age security and disability benefits effect our social security income

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