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Swordpen writes:

I know about the limits and how that works, my question is simply that while on the job full time, do I have to quit & declare that I'm retiring before I go for SS? Is there any rule about that? I think the rule applies to yrly. income as opposed to monthly? My plan was to sgn up while working, collect salary AND SS until job income reaches limit, then quit job. Is this fuzzy math?

The SSA uses a different method to compute your first-year benefit, or the benefit that starts after you "quit" work. Here's what the SSA says:


When entitlement to benefits begins or ends during the year, many people work in months before or after entitlement. We use a monthly test to consider these earnings. The monthly earnings test provides that a person can receive full benefits for any month in which he or she does not earn wages over one-twelfth of the annual exempt amount and does not perform substantial services in self-employment. We pay benefits in these months regardless of the amount by which the person's earnings exceed the annual exempt amount.

We use the monthly earnings test in the first year that a person does not work over the monthly limit in at least 1 month. We also use the monthly test for the year benefits end for children (including students) or parents who get benefits because they are caring for a young or disabled child.


After December 31 of the initial benefit year is over, then the ordinary earnings test comes into play.


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