By: Jeremy Mulvihill
on October 12, 2018
What is the minimum Social Security benefit? One major Social Security issue of this presidential election cycle has been minimum Social Security benefits, and whether or not we should raise them. Several candidates on both sides of the political spectrum (yes, even Republicans) argued in favor of a higher minimum benefit to prevent any retirees from living in poverty. So, how low are the current minimums, and how much of a raise would we need to keep retirees above the poverty line?
How Social Security benefits are calculated
In order to be eligible for Social Security retirement benefits, you'll need to earn a total of 40 "credits" over the course of your working lifetime. In 2016, you'll get one credit for every $1,260 in Social Security taxable earnings, and there is a maximum of four per year. So, to become eligible, you'll need to work for at least 10 years with earnings of at least $5,040 per year. (Note: The earnings amount required for one credit adjusts annually.) Continue Reading