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As the Social Security system stands, full retirement age (FRA) falls somewhere between 66 and 67 for most individuals (eventually, FRA will reach 67 for all taxpayers). Taxpayers who claim Social Security once they’ve reached age 62, but before reaching full retirement age, are penalized depending upon how early they claim benefits.

Under the formula, benefits are reduced by 6.7% for every 12 months before FRA that they are claimed. Payments are increased by 8% per 12 months for people who wait until after full retirement age to claim benefits.

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