The Motley fool has an ad campaign that says you can make $15,978 more per year on Social Security by doing 17 minutes of work using a legal loophole. I don't want to link to their ad (although, you can find it by searching motley fool 15978).

What are they talking about here? Is there any truth to this? If someone could explain it to me without me having to watch the entire ad video or subscribe to their newsletter, I'd appreciate it.

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    Did you hit post on this prematurely? It seems like necessary information is missing. Like what exactly Motley Fool said and why. – user32479 Feb 23 '16 at 18:58
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    I kind of like this question, plus there is a great answer. – Pete B. Feb 23 '16 at 20:43
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    @PeteBelford With the revision it's become more interesting. The initial post had no content so you couldn't know what was asked. Ben Miller did his own research to even determine the meaning of the question let alone the answer. – user32479 Feb 23 '16 at 22:54
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    Well, here it is 2018 and Motley Fool is still making this claim. Only now they’re promising $16,122.00. – MA57 Mar 4 '18 at 12:00

The purpose of this spammy Motley Fool video ad is to sell their paid newsletter products. Although the beginning of the video promises to tell you this secret trick for obtaining additional Social Security payments, it fails to do so. (Luckily, I found a transcript of the video, so I didn't have to watch it.)

What they are talking about is the Social Security File and Suspend strategy. Under this strategy, one spouse files for social security benefits early (say age 66). This allows the other spouse to claim spousal benefits. Immediately after that is claimed, the first spouse suspends his social security benefits, allowing them to grow until age 70, but the other spouse is allowed to continue to receive spousal benefits.

Congress has ended this loophole, and it will no longer be available after May 1, 2016.

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    Motley Fool has jumped the shark. At this point you're better off finding advice elsewhere. – keshlam Feb 24 '16 at 5:47
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    If this is true, that the loophole was suspended in 2016, the MF is committing fraud by continuing to advertise the strategy. The feds need to step in and make corrective measures. – Charles Henderson Oct 14 '17 at 17:39
  • It's also fraudulently claiming "you" - meaning everyone - could do it, since the loophole was only available to married couples. – jamesqf Mar 4 '18 at 18:41
  • @jamesqf married couples old enough to start claiming social security. – stannius Apr 16 '19 at 20:11

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