According to this site after 10 years of work I will have enough credit to retire. enter image description here

But what does it mean in reality? How can one just retire after 10 years of work and be eligible for social security benefits for the rest of their life? If someone starts working at the age of 20 and decides to retire at the age of 30, the government will pay him until they die? Or is it based on the savings and once it runs out its over? But in that case, is there even a point to contribute towards the social security benefits if it's almost like saving money in your bank account?


Look at the left column. If you are disabled at age 62 or older and have worked for at least 10 years they you qualify for full disability benefits (which are generally less than retirement benefits).

Outside of disability, one is only eligible for social security benefits at age 67 (unless you were born before 1960, in which case different rules apply), but you must have worked for at least 10 years to get full retirement benefits.

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    Retirement benefits, yes. There are different rules for disability and survivorship (i.e. if your spouse dies before age 67) – D Stanley Sep 22 '17 at 13:41
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    "Completely disabled" is over-stating it by a long shot. Some people's disability is another's "life". apps.npr.org/unfit-for-work – Peter K. Sep 22 '17 at 13:41
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    @PeterK. very true. Fixed. – D Stanley Sep 22 '17 at 13:42
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    @Grasper: No, you can currently get SS retirement benefits starting at age 62. However, you will get a reduced amount. The amount increases (at about 8% per year) for each year you wait until age 70. 67 is your "full retirement age", when the SS bureaucrats think most people should be retiring and collecting benefits. – jamesqf Sep 22 '17 at 18:07
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    To add to @jamesqf's comment, the increase in SS benefits between full retirement age and 70 is based on the reduced life expectancy at age 70 as compared to life expectancy of a 67-year old. A person starting SS benefits at age 67 and dying when expected will get the same total dollar amount in SS benefits as the person starting SS benefits at age 70 and dying when expected. Moral: if you are in good health, delay SS benefits till 70, but if you are in poor health, start taking SS benefits sooner; you will get more than you would than by waiting till 70 and dying soon thereafter. – Dilip Sarwate Sep 23 '17 at 2:36

I believe you are confusing "retirement" and "disability". If you become disabled, then yes, the above chart you referenced applies to you. The US government will send you a disability check to assist you with living. This is very different from retirement.


The screen copy talks about disablity, so if you want to cut your leg off or so, this would work.

Otherwise, yes, you can retire anytime now. However, you can only get social security benefits after you turn 60, and it will not be much.

So if you have enough money around to feed yourself till you turn 60, and thereafter want to live on the meager benefits, then you can retire now.

  • What happens if I die before the retirement? Where will the money go? – Grasper Sep 22 '17 at 15:45
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    Nowhere. It doesn't work like a personal savings account; it is not your money until you get it. – Aganju Sep 22 '17 at 16:34
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    @Aganju isn't it 62? – zeta-band Sep 22 '17 at 17:26
  • @Grasper: Assuming you don't have a spouse or children who could collect part of your benefit if you die, the money goes to pay benefits to those who are still alive. It's rather like a tontine: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tontine – jamesqf Sep 22 '17 at 18:10
  • @jamesqf, oh only my immediate family can collect it? – Grasper Sep 22 '17 at 18:48

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