Home 5 Ag Stories Protecting farmer retirement and social security

Protecting farmer retirement and social security

Social security, a large element of retirement, is complicated in all occupations but becomes especially tricky for farmers.

Sean Voskuhl, of AARP, gave advice to farmers regarding their retirement and social security benefits.

“For farmers, who are often land rich and cash poor, and may not have traditional retirement funds, Social Security benefits are a big part of retirement planning. How your farm is taxed and set up as a business affects your Social Security benefits. And, it’s just one piece of the retirement, succession and estate plan for farmers. Bring up Social Security conversations with your accountant and financial planner to find what mix of options are available for you.”

Another item to consider for all Americans is scammers. Scamming efforts have revved up in recent years. Voskuhl told listeners what to watch out for.

“The caller asks you to confirm your number so they can issue you a new one, for a fee. However, Social Security does not block or suspend numbers, ever. On the other hand, you might get a call saying there is a cost-of-living increase in your benefits. You just have to verify your name, date of birth and Social Security number. And, armed with that, scammers can hijack your account. If you get a call out of the blue from the Social Security Administration, it’s probably a scam, and it’s really best to hang up.”

For all other questions regarding retirement, Voskuhl suggests visiting AARP’s online resource center, in which social security is specifically highlighted.

“This site includes everything from eligibility to work and taxes. Spouse and children, divorce, all the things that can impact Social Security, along with frequently asked questions and answers. It really is a one-stop-shop for Social Security education and a great first step in determining what’s best for your financial security.”

For more information, visit the AARP website: aarp.org