Personal Finance

Social Security: 4 Simple Ways to Boost Your Benefits

Source: Social Security Administration.

The trade-off, of course, is that by waiting to collect benefits, you'll receive them for fewer years during your lifetime. If you take payments later, it can take years to catch up and pass what you would have gotten by claiming benefits early. It's therefore important to consider your financial needs and your life expectancy in making the best decision for you and your family.

4. Make the most of your family situation

Social Security isn't just about you. Spouses and minor children can also earn benefits based on your work history during your lifetime, and survivors are entitled to benefits after your death. Being smart about when and how you claim Social Security has an impact on them as well.

Source: Social Security Administration.

For instance, under certain circumstances, married couples can set things up so that one spouse collects spousal benefits even as the other's benefit amount continues to grow. Yet without following the right steps, couples can miss out on those payments. A number of similar strategies can boost your family's total take from Social Security, but only if they're implemented correctly.

Social Security is a complicated program, but it's also essential for millions of Americans. Doing what you can to boost your benefits will make sure you get the most from the work you've done throughout your career.

How to get even more income during retirement

Social Security plays a key role in your financial security, but it's not the only way to boost your retirement income. In our brand-new free report, our retirement experts give their insight on a simple strategy to take advantage of a little-known IRS rule that can help ensure a more comfortable retirement for you and your family. Click here to get your copy today.

The article Social Security: 4 Simple Ways to Boost Your Benefits originally appeared on Fool.com.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days . We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy .

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