The increase in the COLA for United States Social Security is unstoppable. By 2022 it has already increased by 6% and it doesn’t look like inflation has any reason to stop. With all this price change, it is only natural that many people worry about their Social Security benefit. For some people this benefit may be reduced in the coming months because of the GPO and WEP, which have a direct impact.
If you are a CSRS worker you should be aware that Social Security may reduce your final pension. This happens since you do not contribute taxes the same as other United States citizens. If your partner does qualify for a retirement benefit, you can claim it. But you should be aware that it will be reduced by your salary.
You should know that this situation is not for everyone, but it is for many of these CSRS workers. Therefore, it is good for you to know all the information so that you can decide later what you need to do to claim any incorrect information from Social Security.
Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and Social Security
This rule affects workers who did not pay taxes when they were working (CSRS workers, mainly, but also Public Education workers). Retirement and disability benefits in this regard could get a cut. The Social Security Administration could change the calculation of your final benefit. This change would result in a lower retirement benefit.
All the complete information is available through the Social Security Administration’s website, but there is one thing you can know in advance. If you have worked around 30 years in taxable jobs, this reduction is very low. In any case, it is a good idea to check all the data directly with the WEP reduction tables.
By checking these tables you can get an estimate of the amount you will receive from this allowance. However, you won’t know the exact amount until you complete all the documents and submit them. After completing the application, you will receive the final amount from the Social Security Administration.
Government Pension Offset (GPO)
On the other hand, the GPO also modifies the pension of retirees. It primarily affects the benefits you could earn from a spouse’s retirement. Through the GPO, the Social Security Administration reduces the benefit received as a spouse, widow or widower. This benefit can see a cut by up to two-thirds of the final amount.
Therefore, if you are married to someone who is affected by the GPO, it ultimately affects you as well, to a greater or lesser extent. For any claim, you can go to the office as we have already indicated. You should first check all possible facts about your situation, as you may be wrong in your calculations.
In this regard, the GPO can be very hard on CSRS retirees who want to collect the contributory pension through their partner’s tax history. If you are in this case, it is best to check all the data in the official GPO document to know the final amount you will receive from the Social Security Administration. For any direct questions or doubts, you can go to the office that corresponds to you or talk to a lawyer specialized in pensions and retirements.