The 2016 budget has passed Congress, and the President has signed it into law. The implications of this deal are significant for your clients since it contains some sweeping revisions to Social Security. Specifically, it dramatically limits two of the major planning techniques that have helped beneficiaries maximize Social Security benefits. If you’re doing Social Security planning with your clients, you need to understand these changes and make sure you’re using software that can help you apply the right set of rules.
The Changes Explained
The changes focus on the claiming rules for retirees, specifically on the Restricted Application and the Voluntary Suspension strategies. The video on this page, from our partners at Social Security Timing®, explains the changes in detail. In short, the Restricted Application for spousal benefits will be phased out over the next four years, and the Voluntary Suspension option will be eliminated in approximately six months (180 days from enactment of the law).
We believe the impact of this law will make addressing Social Security with your clients more important than ever before. First, it’s going to create confusion. Now, instead of one set of rules, your clients are affected by three: the rules for the next 180 days, the rules for people born Jan. 1, 1954, or earlier, and the rules for those born after Jan. 1, 1954. Second, it’s going to create urgency. These changes will raise awareness of Social Security planning and these strategies, and people will want to take advantage of them if they can in the short term. If you can’t help them or answer their questions, the may find another advisor who will.
How This Will Affect Total Social Security Users
For years Senior Market Sales® has offered Social Security software, FINRA-reviewed marketing materials, support and training, most recently through the Total Social Security program. We are now working to update all of these resources to reflect the changes to Social Security.
If you have questions, call us at 1-877-645-4939.