Social Security: The $1.2 Million “Asset” You May Not Know You Have

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What if I told you that you had a “hidden” nest egg worth $1.2 million?

Many middle-class retirees already do.

The problem is most of them don’t know it…

Don’t leave your money on the table

According to polling firm Gallup, the No. 1 financial worry for Americans over 30 is running out of money in retirement.

Alert: The Secret to Maxing Out Your Retirement Benefits.

Even if that’s not your chief worry, you should know that you’re probably leaving thousands of dollars in benefits – money you’ve earned – on the table.

Social Security’s unlikely millionaires

According to Dr. Laurence Kotlikoff, Harvard PhD and a former economics adviser to President Reagan, you almost certainly are.

His new book, Get What’s Yours: The Secrets to Maxing Out Your Social Security, cuts through Social Security’s 2,728 rules… and thousands upon thousands of additional amendments.

And it spells out, in plain English, the dozens of simple “tricks” buried within the Social Security code to help you maximize your lifetime benefits. (Read on here for full details.)

As Dr. Kotlikoff writes in Get What’s Yours:

Middle-income and upper-income households actually have the most to gain in total amounts, from getting Social Security right. Totaling up lifetime benefits, even low-earning couples may be Social Security millionaires.

And except for Bill Gates and the Warren Buffetts of this world – whose percentage of the population was exceedingly modest last we checked – Social Security is a very meaningful income source.

Just how meaningful a source of income are we talking about?

According to Dr. Kotlikoff, a 60-year-old couple who stopped working at that age… and who earned the maximum FICA limit starting at the age of 25… will have a Social Security “asset” worth $1.2 million if they start collecting at 62.

Special: Get Dr. Laurence Kotlikoff’s 50 Secrets to Higher Lifetime Benefits

(Put another way, you’d need a portfolio of $1.2 million to produce the same level of annual income that you’d get from Social Security.)

That’s about four times the typical nest egg of a household headed by someone between the ages of 65 and 69.

And as Dr. Kotlikoff writes in Get What’s Yours:

All you have to do is stay alive and those Social Security payments will keep coming each and every month – payments guaranteed by the United States government and protected against inflation.

That’s because every January, you get, by law, annual benefit raises that equal the prior year’s rate of inflation.

All your other retirement funds – stocks, bonds, real estate, etc. – can lose value. But your Social Security benefits have historically been much more stable.

And by taking advantage of the loopholes he’s identified in the Social Security code, Dr. Kotlikoff says the couple from the example above can increase the value of their $1.2 million Social Security “asset” by $400,000 – or 33%.

That would leave the couple with a retirement asset worth $1.6 million.

All they have to do to get this boost, says Dr. Kotlikoff, is apply for the right benefits at the right time. That’s the tricky part…

As Dr. Kotlikoff warns… you should not trust Social Security’s advice. Many Social Security representatives aren’t even aware of the loopholes he’s identified. Besides, they’re forbidden to offer guidance. They must only offer information.

In fact, their rules clearly state, “Do not attempt to explain the rationale for any particular operational guidelines, nor go to any great lengths to justify them.”

Don’t sacrifice your own retirement

Many conservatives are not fans of the Social Security system. Some have called it out as a glorified Ponzi scheme, noting that it would be illegal as a private annuity plan.

Dr. Kotlikoff agrees 100%.

He says Social Security is a “disgrace” in the way it’s been designed and financed:

If you look at the fiscal gap for Social Security – our basic pension system – it’s 23% underfinanced. The Detroit pensions were 20% underfinanced.

Dr. Kotlikoff has literally written the book on maxing out your Social Security benefits. So it may surprise you that he’s also one of the nation’s leading critics of Social Security’s funding shortfall.

But, Dr. Kotlikoff is a passionate critic of how Washington’s overspending is leaving the next generation with a bill it can’t hope to ever pay. He calls this a “terrible act of immorality.”

We agree…

But just because the system is flawed doesn’t mean you should leave hundreds of thousands of dollars of benefits on the table.

As Dr. Kotlikoff put it when I talked to him:

Collectively, we all have to pay more in taxes and take less in benefits.

That’s up for Congress to fix. But there’s no obligation for your readers to sacrifice their retirements to help somebody who’s not sacrificing his retirement.

The book that shouldn’t need to exist

If the system functioned properly, Get What’s Yours wouldn’t need to exist.

But in the US, maxing out your Social Security is not something you’re going to be able to do on your own. As Dr. Kotlikoff writes in Get What’s Yours:

The Social Security system has 2,728 core rules and thousands upon thousands of additional codicils in its Program Manual, which supposedly clarify those rules.

In the case of married couples alone, the formula for each spouse’s benefit comprises 10 complex mathematical functions, one of which is in four dimensions.

It’s a Kafkaesque nightmare. And according to Dr. Kotlikoff, the complexity of the Social Security system – which he describes as “beyond belief” – means people lose out every day on what they’re due.

As he describes in the book, it has led retirees to “collectively leave tens of billions of dollars in Social Security benefits on the table.”

Luckily for you, Dr. Kotlikoff’s mission makes it as simple as possible for you to maximize your Social Security payments.

For instance, if you’re married there’s a simple way you can pick up an extra $50,000… if you’re divorced you could collect $647 a month thanks to your ex-spouse (whether he or she likes it or not)… and even if you’re already collecting Social Security, there are still ways to boost your benefits by as much as 32%.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg… Get What Yours details dozens of tips, tricks and loopholes to maximize the Social Security benefits you’ve earned… and therefore deserve.

If you’re already in retirement… or are retiring soon… and want to make sure you’re getting the most out of this hugely important retirement asset, Get What’s Yours is going to be the most valuable book you’ll ever read.

I strongly encourage you to check it out. Simply go here to learn more…

Although we’re glad to be discussing issues that are important to our readers, we are not the retirement experts. We’ll leave that to Dr. Kotlikoff and his co-authors.

You’ll have an opportunity to ask him some questions yourself. We’re working with him to organize an exclusive webinar to do exactly that.
More details are here.