The Social Security Early Retirement Benefit as Safety Net

TitleThe Social Security Early Retirement Benefit as Safety Net
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsBound, J, Waidmann, TA, Michigan Retirement Research Center
InstitutionThe University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center
KeywordsDemographics, Disabilities, Retirement Planning and Satisfaction, Social Security

In this paper we used the Health and Retirement Study to examine the health and economic status of those who collect Social Security retirement benefits prior to the full retirement age. We used a propensity score reweighting method to estimate the fraction of early retirees who uses early retirement benefits as a safety net against deteriorating health and who might be induced to apply for disability benefits (SSDI) or retire without income replacement if the generosity or availability of early retirement benefits were reduced. We find that while the majority of early retirees would likely not qualify for disability benefits, approximately one in five have health characteristics similar to SSDI beneficiaries, and thus might not be able to replace losses in benefit income with labor income.

Endnote Keywords

socioeconomic Status/retirement benefits/disability benefits/early Retirement/earnings and Benefits File

Endnote ID


Citation Key5799