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How Is Social Security’s Mistake My Fault?

Editor’s Note: This story comes from Wealthramp.

If you haven’t already heard, Social Security is in the process of “clawing back” more than $21 billion of benefits it mistakenly sent out to retirees and disabled people over the last 40 years because of its own inaccurate calculations.

For those who don’t know, our CEO and founder, Pam Krueger, co-hosts a podcast with Richard Eisenberg and Terry Savage called Friends Talk Money. Terry just released her latest book, “Social Security Horror Stories: Protect Yourself From the System and Avoid Clawbacks,” which she co-authored with famed economist and Social Security expert Laurence “Larry” Kotlikoff.

They were also featured recently on “60 Minutes,” interviewed by Anderson Cooper to shed light on some of the families tragically impacted by this careless mistake by the Social Security Administration (SSA). In their book, Terry and Larry break down the problem and offer a simple solution to help those affected by this sudden, life-changing financial obstacle. You can purchase their book now on Amazon.

The Problem

The SSA is notifying millions of Americans – elderly retirees and disabled people – that they must make a plan to repay sums ranging from a few thousand dollars to over $300,000, or their checks will stop!

On top of that, it’s almost impossible to get through to the SSA to request a waiver or a hearing. Millions of people who depend on those monthly checks are suddenly struggling to make ends meet.

Furthermore, the SSA has all the power: If you don’t repay, they simply stop sending your benefit checks. For those counting on those monthly benefits, it presents an immediate crisis. And, if you were having Medicare Part B premiums deducted from your monthly benefit, you now have to find money to pay them out of pocket.

The Solution

How do you verify that your records are in sync with Social Security’s calculations? Doing your homework beforehand can be challenging and confusing, but knowing how much you are entitled to when speaking with them is important.

The biggest mistake you can make is “asking” Social Security what benefit amount you should receive. Instead, you should be using Larry’s simple online calculator: MaximizeMySocialSecurity.com. Larry’s software costs $39, but it could save you a small fortune over your retirement years. This calculator is useful for everyone.

If you haven’t already started to receive benefits, use it to learn what you should be getting and how much more you’ll get if you wait a few more years. If you’re already receiving benefits, use it so you won’t be the subject of a big clawback in the future. This powerful tool can help you make the most of your benefits.

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