5 facts you didn't know about Social Security

Greg: After the money comes out of your paycheck, it doesn't go into an account with your name on it. No, it goes to somebody else who's already retired. That's how this works.

Holden: To collect Social Security, you need a minimum of 40 quarters of work, and a minimum of $1,200 in earnings in each of those quarters.

Barb: Some people who are divorced may not be aware of this: You can draw on your ex's social security benefit. It won't hurt his or her benefit at all. But, there is a stipulation: You have to have been married at least 10 years before this is available to you.

Sheyna: If you can, wait until you're 70 to file for Social Security benefits. If you wait that long, you'll get a bigger monthly paycheck, and if you live a very long time, you'll make out like a bandit because you'll get a big check every month for the rest of your life.

Greg: Every year, we have fewer people working and more people retiring. That raises questions about the whole future of Social Security.

Doug: Well, if there's one thing we know about Social Security, it's a hot button issue for politicians. And, face it: The program is going to change. If it does change, you can count on us to keep you informed.


Show Bankrate's community sharing policy
          Connect with us

Learn the latest trends that will help grow your portfolio, plus tips on investing strategies. Delivered weekly.


Jennie Phipps

Talking turkey about Alzheimer’s

Holidays can be a good time to initiate tough conversations.  ... Read more

Partner Center

Connect with us