Social Security

Incorrect Social Security Benefit Ver 2.29.0

ESPlanner is calculating a slightly different 2015 SS benefit amount than what we're receiving. The error is small,less than 1% too high. Could this be a rounding error? How does the program use the monthly SS benefit amount entered in the Social Security window? I've noticed that changing that amount affects the results. Does the program default to using the benefit amounts entered? If so, then the calculation is not being done correctly, albiet a minor error.
Thanks,
James Mavrogenis

Entry of Future Earnings

In both ESPlanner and MaximizeMySocialSecurity, the program asks the user to enter "future earnings" following prior entry of "past covered earnings". Given my spouse' s relatively high earnings, any number entered for "future earnings" is way higher than what her covered earnings will be. As an example, let's assume her earnings in 2014 were $175,000 and her covered earnings upon which she was taxed were 117,000. Is the correct entry for "future earnings" and the estimate of real growth rate called for really the higher number, i. e. the $175,000 figure?

Max Social Security Benefit considered ?

I just read in an article that the maximum monthly benefit for social security in 2015 at retirement age 66 is $2663. I will be 66 in 5 years and am planning to start my benefit then. I looked in my Social Security report and it shows a value greater than 2663 after year 2020 which I expected since my understanding is the amount will be increased by my assumed inflation rate each year after the current year.

Social Security question

In my ESPlanner report, it shows SS benefits starting in 2021. Is the amount shown in current day $ or has it been inflated by 6 years (2021 - 2015)? I'm trying to reconcile the amount show to what I'm seeing from the SSA estimator website. The SSA site shows a number that is much lower and it says this is the number I can expect to receive in 2021. I like your number better, but SSA is going to be cutting the checks. I have checked and made sure that the income amounts in past and future match. Thanks

Adjustment of Reduction Factor (per Larry's PBS column)

According to Larry's most recent PBS article on Social Security, Mike has found some very specific circumstances where you can get one extra month of Social Security benefits. I'm assuming this will be available in a future release.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/making-sense/retiring-heres-how-to-get-an-ex...

Social Security Inflation Rate unrealistic

Currently ESPlanner grows social security benefits for those already collecting by the inflation rate entered in Assumptions. The actual increase of benefits has been less than inflation - even the default 3% - by a sizable percentage for years. Will the program be revised to allow the SS benefit inflation rate to be set by the user?
If this is not feasible, what can a user do to make ESPlanner's future SS benefits more realistic.
Thanks
James

Social Security Differs From SSA.Gov Estimate

Just created a My Social Security.gov account and noticed that the government's current estimate of my SSA benefit is about 2% lower than ESPlanner. I'm assuming the difference is either due to inflation/cost of living assumptions, or some other assumption about the law going forward. I am 60. Can you possibly pinpoint possible reasons for differences? I checked that the earnings histories and future earnings matched. Thx

How can I get Social Security benefits to calculate correctly?

I was making a much larger salary until this year. I resigned and started my own business in 2014. Since my projected earnings from 2014 and future years are significantly lower than what I have been earning, the calculated social security benefit when I retire is artificially low. (There doesn't seem to be a place to show the planner that my 2014 income is not typical of what I have been earning in most years.) How can I correct this in the program?

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