An often-overlooked part of estate planning is social security. We often hear that social security is not enough for an individual to live on during retirement, especially given that people are living longer lives and often require additional medical care when reaching an advanced age. However, social security can actually be an important part of your retirement planning – and consequently an important part of your comprehensive estate plan. That means that social security survivor benefits could play a bigger role in your retirement and estate planning than you may have thought.
How do survivor benefits work?
Credits are an important part of determining what social security benefits a person is eligible for, if any. Workers earn credits through their individual earnings each year. The maximum number of credits a worker can earn in a year is four. You must attain a certain number of these credits over your lifetime in order to qualify for certain benefits. If you take a break from working for a number of years, your credits still remain on your social security record and you can begin accumulating them again once you return to the workforce.