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Another "Round" of Social Security for All My Friends!

Retirement Funding

Special Rule for Those Who Served in the Military

If you served in the military between 1957 and 2001, you will get some "extra" Social Security benefits in retirement. You may or may not be aware, but military members only pay Social Security taxes on base pay. Other taxable income (like flight pay or bonuses) are not subject to Social Security taxes or Medicare taxes either. I think because of this, the formula to calculate your Social Security benefits. As a result, you'll get more money from Social Security.

Serve in the Military Between 1957 - 1977?

If you did, you are probably already receiving Social Security. The earnings used to calculate your Social Security will be increased by $300 for each quarter in which you received military base pay. This increase should have been done automatically. But, if you have some time, it would be worth it to verify this was done.

What About Military Service Between 1978 - 2001?

Like the time period above, the earnings used to calculate your Social Security will be increased. In this case, your earnings will be increased by $100 for every $300 of military base pay earned, up to a maximum of $1,200 per year. If you haven't filed for Social Security, the amounts were automatically added to your records. I'd definitely Trust but Verify on this one. You'll need to compare your old tax returns to what Social Security says you earned.

What If I Served After 2001?

In this case, you do not receive any extra benefits.

It is possible that one, two or all three of the scenarios above could apply to you. Military pay and benefits are not simple. They're not impossible either. But if you spend each day and every day working with them they get a little less complicated. If you'd like some help, let us know.



If you liked this article, you might enjoy the following blog posts:


Military Finances 201: Take Social Security Early and Invest It?


Military Finances 201: How do Retirement Accounts Affect Each Other?


Minimum Distribution Rules: Key Things Every Retired Military Officer Should Know




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