Anyone who knows me can attest to the fact that I’m always reading and trying to find information that can help inform other people. Recently, I came across an article in the Epoch Times about the rumor of a “marriage penalty” with Social Security, and I knew I needed to share that information with you. I’ve heard about this rumor before, but I’ve decided to do a little research so that you understand it too.
To begin, let’s examine the rumor that your Social Security benefits will be cut if you decide to get married to someone else. That’s wholly untrue. According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), marriage will not make any impact on your Social Security benefits. Those benefits are determined by your earnings history as well as your work history. Spouses who both qualify for retirement benefits will collect those benefits separately.
There is a caveat to this that you should know about too. Remarriage does not affect retirement benefits, but it affects benefits that have been collected from a deceased or former spouse. Linked here is a helpful page from the AARP that provides more clarity on how remarriage can play a role in determining how collected benefits can change. Also, the Epoch Times article I linked in the first paragraph provides even more insight on this issue. The writer, Tom Margenau, worked for the Social Security Administration for 32 years.
Next, there is no maximum benefit amount when it comes to married couples. There’s a prevailing belief – albeit an incorrect one – that the benefits earned by married couples are capped at a certain amount of money. Again, this is untrue. There is, however, a maximum family benefit that is often misinterpreted as a cap on married couples. This maximum family benefit is determined based on a single wage earner’s record and not on marriage.
Please share this information with anyone who may find it useful. As always, I’ll continue to be on the lookout for information that you need to know, and as always, I’ll turn to the facts.
The Real Cost of School Shutdowns
The Wall Street Journal recently published an editorial citing a new report on the real impact of school closures and how students continue to fall behind. In the report conducted by McKinsey & Co., it was revealed that there was a dramatic shift in test score results between students who received in-person instruction before the pandemic and those who were stuck at home due to school shutdowns. During the pandemic, it was found that children who faced school closures were, on average, four to five months behind in reading and math – a shocking lapse in their educational pursuits. In response to the editorial, I penned a letter to the editor about how teachers unions bare a significant portion of the blame for those dismal performances. It’s truly shameful.
To read my letter to the editor, click here.
Quote of The Week
The school year is steadily approaching for college students across North Carolina, and many do not know about the threats of identity theft that are lurking on college campuses. Online information protection is one of the top priorities that should be on students’ minds – especially with the unprecedented waves of virtual scams that have happened thus far. One of the most important things that students can do to protect their personal information is creating secure logins and passwords for each website they rely on. As one of the most vulnerable groups of people who are susceptible to scams, it’s imperative that students take all necessary precautions that can help stop scammers in their tracks.
To learn more from the BBB of Eastern North Carolina about these scams, click here.
“Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me the truth.”
- Henry David Thoreau
Have a blessed weekend.