What happens with taxes when I get Social Security and work?


Q. I am 57 and plan to collect Social Security at age 70. I will have to continue working as advised by financial planners because my monthly income is projected to have a $600 per month deficit. What happens with taxes when I get Social Security?
— Still working

A. We’re glad you’re planning ahead.

There are lots of moving parts when it comes to determining retirement income, so we’re glad to see you’re working with professionals.

Your full retirement age (FRA) for Social Security would be 67, said Jody D’Agostini, a certified financial planner with Equitable Advisors/The Falcon Financial Group in Morristown.

If you collect your benefit anytime after you have achieved that age, there is no reduction of benefit while working, she said.

“For each year that you continue to work and not collect beyond age 67, there is an 8% increase in your monthly benefit,” she said. “Therefore, if you either continue to work, or do not collect until age 70, you will start with a benefit that is 24% higher than what you would have collected at age 67.”

The optimal age to start collecting varies with your circumstances, but if you delay as long as possible, your starting point is higher, D’Agostini said.
And if you live a long life, this could be a substantial difference over time. After age 70, there is no increase in your benefit, so you should certainly begin to claim, she said.

To start your benefit at age 70, you can either make an appointment at a Social Security office, apply online at or call (800) 772-1213.

D’Agostini said it can take up to three months to receive your first benefit payment so you should apply in advance. The benefits can begin the month after you attain full retirement age or whenever you stipulate, she said.

Your benefit is based on the top 35 years of your earnings history.

“The more you earn and delay claiming, the more robust your benefit,” she said. “Social Security might be taxable in retirement depending upon your income. For individuals, it is not taxable if you earn less than $25,000. It is up to 50% taxable for income up to $34,000, and is up to 85% taxable for income over $34,000.”

Email your questions to .

This story was originally published on Aug. 23, 2021. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.