Timing is Everything

Filed in DOL, Retirement by on August 13, 2014 0 Comments

a clock with the words "retirement soon" on its faceEver missed a great opportunity because you were late? Or paid more because you made your plans at the last minute? Timing is everything – particularly when you are preparing to retire. As you get closer to retirement, there are some key decisions to make to ensure that your hard work and savings pay off.

Whether you are close to retirement or helping your parents or grandparents plan, we can help you and your family get the timing right with the Retirement Toolkit, upcoming webcast and timeline below.

Start making catch-up contributions. Workplace savings plans have a cap on how much you can contribute. But you can contribute more to your 401(k) and other retirement accounts through catch-up contributions once you turn 50.

If you need to, you can take an early withdrawal from your 401(k) without a tax penalty. But try to leave it there so it can grow until retirement.

Age 62 is the earliest you can collect a Social Security retirement benefit. However, it will be a reduced benefit, so consider waiting a few years to get a larger monthly benefit.

Most of us need to sign up for Medicare and Medicare Part D at age 65.

66 – 67
Depending on when you were born, you can receive a full Social Security benefit between ages 66 and 67. But if you wait to collect your benefit, you can receive an even larger benefit, up to age 70.

If you haven’t yet, you’ll need to start taking minimum withdrawals from most retirement accounts six months after your seventieth birthday to avoid future penalties.

Here’s another way you can get the timing right: register for our webcast on Sept. 9 at 1 p.m. EDT. Speakers from the Labor Department, the Social Security Administration, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Administration on Aging will provide information to help you make timely decisions as you plan for retirement. Take a little time now so you can make the most of your retirement later. 

Phyllis C. Borzi is the assistant secretary of labor for employee benefits security.


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