Applying for Social Security Early? What To Do If You Turn 62 in 2022

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If you’re turning 62 in 2022 there are a few things you’ll want to know before you begin considering applying for social security from how far in advance you can apply to how much early retirement could impact your benefits, if at all.

When Should You Apply?

If you decide to take benefits early at age 62, the soonest you can apply is up to four months before you want your retirement benefits to start. You must be at least age 62 for the entire month to be eligible to receive benefits.

The Social Security Administration states that if you were born on the first or second day of the month, you meet this requirement in the month of your 62nd birthday. If you were born on any other day of the month, you do not meet this requirement until the following month.

For example, the SSA states that if you turn 62 on Dec. 2, you can start your benefits as early as December. If you want your benefits to start in December, you would need to apply in August. If you turn 62 any day after December 2, you are age 62 for the entire month of December, meaning you can start your benefits as early as January when you are 62 for the entire month. This means you would have to apply in September.

Does Applying Early Impact Benefits?

What age you decide to start drawing on social security benefits largely impacts the amount in your monthly check. Although overall, the amount of money is more or less the same throughout a lifetime regardless of when you decide to take distributions, you can start your retirement benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. 

Are You Retirement Ready?

If you begin taking benefits at 62, your monthly check will be reduced — sometimes by as much as 30% — than if you had waited to take benefits at age 70. If you’re preparing to apply for benefits, knowing when you are eligible to apply and how the system works are the first steps in determining what age is best for you. 

Every person’s situation is unique, so setting up a mySocialSecurity account can help you make the most informed decision, says the SSA.

When Do I Recieve My First Check?

Social Security benefits are paid in the month following the month they are due, meaning if you are due benefits for December, you will receive our first check in January for December’s benefits.

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