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JonY

How will my in-laws earn their social security benefit?

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My in-laws received their green cards in 2016. My father-in-law is 67 and mother-in-law is 62. They might possibly have secured a job and will soon have incomes.

Here are some notions I've heard w.r.t social security benefits, please correct me if I am wrong:

  • They have to work 10 years and earn 40 points (4 / each year) to become a Social security beneficiary;
  • They have to withdraw their SS benefit after 70 year old, which will automatically disqualify my father-in-laws as he has only 3 years left before reaching 70, thus won't be able to earn enough points for SS benefit;
  • However, I also heard that a couple can combine their points, meaning that my father- and mother-in-law would earn 8 points combined per year and it take only 5 years to cross the threshold as opposed to 10 years.

Thank you for your reply.

Jon

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SS is something you pay into. You know that section of your pay check that is deducted from every one of you paychecks since you started working? If they don't pay into it there is nothing to take out.

It's true they will have to pay into it over a certain amount of time. At their age them having only paid 10 years or less would not generate them a significant SS payment.

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SS is something you pay into. You know that section of your pay check that is deducted from every one of you paychecks since you started working? If they don't pay into it there is nothing to take out.

It's true they will have to pay into it over a certain amount of time. At their age them having only paid 10 years or less would not generate them a significant SS payment.

Exactly this, Social Security is a privilege you earn by paying into it, not a right that you get for being in the USA.

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You don't get to claim credits from both . Also social security is based on your years averaged over your highest 35 years of work and a 0 is averaged in for every year that you have no earnings. So even if your parents work for 10 years they will have 25 years of 0 in their average. Meaning they would get very small checks.

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You don't get to claim credits from both . Also social security is based on your years averaged over your highest 35 years of work and a 0 is averaged in for every year that you have no earnings. So even if your parents work for 10 years they will have 25 years of 0 in their average. Meaning they would get very small checks.

The way I read it, apparently you DO get to claim credits from both. The immigrant needs to work in the US, but only 6 quarters instead of the usual 40. Not a route to SS available to everyone, but maybe for some. And a small check is better than none.

"Under a Totalization agreement, if a worker has some U.S. coverage but not enough to qualify for benefits, SSA will count periods of coverage that the worker has earned under the Social Security program of an agreement country. In the same way, a country party to an agreement with the United States will take into account a worker's coverage under the U.S. program if it is needed to qualify for that country's Social Security benefits. If the combined credits in the two countries enable the worker to meet the eligibility requirements, a partial benefit can then be paid, which is based on the proportion of the worker's total career completed in the paying country.

The agreements allow SSA to totalize U.S. and foreign coverage credits only if the worker has at least six quarters of U.S. coverage. Similarly, a person may need a minimum amount of coverage under the foreign system in order to have U.S. coverage counted toward meeting the foreign benefit eligibility requirements."

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