Asked by smittylov  |  Submitted August 02, 2016

I am a retired federal goverrnment employee I now get a Civil Service Pension and at 62 I was told I will receive social security. How will that work?

I was told my benefits would be $2200 a month.

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  Answers  |  1

August 05, 2016

Thanks for bringing forth such a good question that many Americans, including yourself, need to know how to answer. I'm going to attempt to give you a general understanding of how social security can affect your government pension, however I must say that this doesn't constitute as "advice." Any financial planner would need to get to know a lot more about your situation to get into specifics, such as your age, how long you worked, your marital status, etc.

So now that the disclaimers are in place, the short answer is that social security payments can be reduced by as much as 50% of your pension for you via the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), and by 66% for your spouse via the Government Pension Offset (GPO). Those figures are the maximum amounts that affect your family. That doesn't mean that what will happen, but it is a "worst case scenario" illustration. Your specific reduction, if any, is calculated based on the amount and timing of employment income that you collected from jobs that did pay into SS and those that did not.

For more info, I've attached pdf links from SSA on the WEP ( ) and the GPO ( ). They do have charts and calculators on the site from which you can get a more specific idea on how or if you will be affected.

I hope this helps, I strongly encourage you to seek professional guidance from a licensed or certified fee-based advisor, as hopefully this reply shows you how convoluted that this retirement process can actually be.

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