What are Ages for Social Security Early Retirement
and Full Retirement?
Social Security Q&A this week answers this and has
more information for disabled veterans on faster processing of their
application for help
15, 2014 – The age for applying to receive Social Security benefits used
to be simple, because it stayed the same. Now, the age for receiving
full benefits keeps moving higher. But, what about early retirement, a
reader asks? The Social Security Q&A has the answer. It also provides
more details for disabled veterans on the recent move to “high priority”
for disability assistance requests.
My full retirement age is 66 years and 4 months
because I was born in 1956. What is the earliest age I can begin
receiving retirement benefits? Is it 62 or 62 and 4 months?
The earliest age you can begin receiving Social
Security retirement benefits is 62. Although the full retirement age is
increasing from age 66 to 67 for people born after 1954, you can still
apply as early as age 62 regardless of what your full retirement age may
If you decide to receive benefits before your full
retirement age, you will receive a reduced benefit. Keep in mind you
will not be able to receive Medicare coverage until age 65, even if you
decide to retire at an earlier age. You can learn more about the full
retirement age on our
this page at our website.
I am a disabled veteran. I have a compensation
rating of 100% Permanent and Total from the Veteran’s Administration.
Will I automatically qualify to receive Social Security disability?
No. You would have to apply for Social Security
disability and go through the application process.
You may have heard where Social Security recently
announced rules regarding an expedited process for processing disability
applications filed by veterans with a Department of Veterans Affairs
(VA) disability compensation rating of 100% Permanent & Total (P&T).
Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social
Security recently unveiled a new initiative to expedite disability
claims. Under the new process, Social Security will treat these
veterans’ applications as high priority and issue expedited decisions,
similar to the way the agency currently handles disability claims from
“Our veterans have sacrificed so much for our
country and it is only right that we ensure they have timely access to
the disability benefits they may be eligible for and deserve,” said
Acting Commissioner Colvin.
“Social Security worked with Veterans Affairs to
identify those veterans with disabilities who have a high probability of
also meeting our definition of disability. I am proud of our
collaboration and happy to announce this new service for America’s
In order to receive the expedited service, veterans
must tell Social Security they have a VA disability compensation rating
of 100% P&T and show proof of their disability rating with their VA
Notification Letter. The VA rating only expedites Social Security
disability claims processing and does not guarantee an approval for
Social Security disability benefits. These veterans must still meet the
strict eligibility requirements for a disability allowance.
Oscar Garcia is a Public Affairs Specialist with
the Social Security Administration. You can direct your questions to him
at: SSA, 411 Richland Hills Drive, San Antonio, Texas, 78245. You can
also email him at
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