How Special Payments After You Retire Affect Your Social Security Benefit

March 22, 2018 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: March 22, 2018

woman on dock getting into kayak After you retire from your job or self-employment, you may get payments for work you did before you started receiving Social Security benefits. We call those “special payments.” Usually, special payments will not affect your Social Security benefit, if they are for work done before you retired. These payments will be counted in the last month you worked, unless the services can be shown to have been rendered in a prior period.

You should consider this when evaluating your work activity. If you are younger than full retirement age and make more than the yearly earnings limit, your earnings may reduce the amount of your monthly benefit. In 2018, the earnings limit is $17,040 if you are younger than full retirement age for the entire calendar year. If you reach full retirement age in 2018, the earnings limit is $45,360 for the months before you reach full retirement age. Starting with the month you reach full retirement age, you can receive your full monthly benefit no matter how much money you earn.

If you were self-employed, any net income you receive after the first year you retire counts as a special payment if you performed the services before you began receiving Social Security benefits. “Services” are any regular work or other significant activity you do for your business.

You can find more information and examples of special payments by reading Special Payments After Retirement. If you want to learn more about the earnings limit, please read How Work Affects Your Benefits.

Got another question about Social Security? On our website, you can find answers to over 200 of  your most frequently asked questions, and much more. Social Security’s online services are here to put control at your fingertips. See what else you can do online at

Did you find this Information helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!

Tags: ,

See Comments

About the Author

Jim Borland, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Communications

Jim Borland, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Communications


  1. Yoo-I L.

    Hello. Thank You mail Appreciated about, ” How Special Payments After You Retire Affect Your Social Security Benefit
    Posted on March 22, 2018 ” if SSA mentioned above title are “SBPWIC-A(world 700 million senior citizen life enjoy (survive) free monthly money (($))1,500/Mo. It must all 700 million world senior citizen equal receiving.
    Suddenly jump with all SS benefit could be come from SBPWIC are Way-impossible for more heavy than concrete, and it budget should continue to needed, Understanding, that’s why SBPWIC-A distribution real currency to world 700 million senior citizen 1st onto every Gov, 2 Nd year
    50% of every country gov budget can be 100 % and another year be more of budget, if 1 at year success-fully distribution. Yes, in future, every Gov budget selves by SBPWIC are possible if world human equal receiving by world countries gov.
    I individually propose SBPWIC-A World distribution by the Paris Convention under SBPWIC Owner are US, UK and Soviet. SBPWIC-Bank owner is Honorable Franklin D Roosevelt as President William J Clinton and with former US President org, But seems Paris
    May could difficult situation that current having by France former President correct-doing. But I imagine that FR shall glad to receive and safely spend Special Service handling fee from SBPWIC-Bank every year.
    Please see > patent scoop > wo2013008050 SBPWIC (Special budget plan world International currency) details.
    Now Do You happy SBPWIC Distribution by NYNY ?

  2. MrTakaphan T.

    Thank sir ,for give my approved benefits of retirement pay on 03/28/2018, now send to my address Thailand!

  3. Ernest B.

    How old do you have to be before you withdraw your social Security benefit ?

  4. Ernest B.

    Ernest B. Johnson Sr.

  5. Joe P.

    Hay what.s with the windfall tax and why does it not show up on my S/S statement?????

  6. Patricia

    What is the full retirement age? For February 1957

  7. Debbie P.

    I’m just wondering if I receive my ex husband social security when it’s time over my disability monthly payments? As 770.00 is barely enough to survive and because I was married 4X I’m missing a lot of jobs on my own record, and I’m probably not the only one that didn’t know that if your a teenager and married and stay home because of difficult pregnancy and then to raise the child that not filing income tax with the husband doesn’t show any money for that year! I’m sure there are tons of women in Domestic Violence households where the female is not allowed to work and has been isolated from family. Just a thought to consider

    • carols

      Ms. Patterson raises an valid point. Is DOMESTIC VIOLENCE an exception to the “must be married for 10 years” in order to qualify for spousal benefits from a divorced spouses SSA account? If not, does SSA rules force DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS to remain in a dangerous marriage in order to be able to leave the marriage with some financial support?

  8. Bishop J.

    I have recently heard that I may be eligible for extra SS benefits being a Vietnam Veteran serving from 1966 -1969. I also read this on a SS site. Can you please shed some light on this extra benefit

    Thank you,very much!

  9. Thomas H.

    Rec’d communication concerning additional $$$ for veterans. Produce DD214 for those additional funds. Need confirmation of such additional funds.

    • Ray F.

      Please visit our Special Extra Earnings for Military Service web page for information on that topic.

      • Sina

        Thank you. It was so useful.
        I suggest you to visit this website as well: Fastmeata

        • Ali

          Nice job Thanks guys.
          I have some extra texts for you, which you can see here: Injamax

      • Behzad

        I have some related information at my own website: Injamax

    • Tom

      You should check your application or notice of award. There was a question on your application that required SSA to consider your military time and the case could not be processed until that question was answered. Odds are nearly impossible that you did not get credit for that service.

      There is a hoax currently making its way around to scare you into thinking SSA did not give you those credits. Be careful not to give these people money for “protection” from something that you were already protected from. Repeat: your application could not have been processed without asking for that information first.

  10. Lesly F.

    I am 64 years old i am shuffling with depression i have no benefits from social security administration and work on the pass.

Comments are closed.