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Richard Chew, Financial Expert and Principal Owner of 1st Capital Insurance Group

Key Birthday Milestones:

Last Chance to Accumulate

Age 50A golden opportunity to start making catch-up contributions to your qualified employer-sponsored retirement plan (up to $6,000 more) or Individual Retirement Account (up to $1,000 more) annually.

Age 55Have your cake and eat it, too. If you’re no longer working, you may be able to access money from a 401(k) plan without penalty.

Age 59 ½Celebrate! You can now withdraw money from your 401(k) or traditional Individual Retirement Account without penalties.

Transitioning to Retirement

Age 62: If you need to, you can start claiming Social Security at 62. (But be careful – for many people, there are good reasons to delay. As it stands today, benefits will increase about 8% for every year you wait.).

Age 65Happy Medicare day! You can actually sign up three months before your 65th birthday; and don’t wait, or you could get hit with higher premiums.

Age 66/67: Congratulations – you’ve hit full retirement age! Of course, whether you keep working is up to you. (Born before 1959? You qualify at 66 and two months. Born in 1959? 66 and ten months. Born any later, and you have to wait for age 67.)

Taking Income Distributions

Age 70Last call for Social Security – If you haven’t started getting benefits, it’s time. At age 70, Social Security maxes out at 132% of the initial full benefit.

Age 70 ½: Happy half-birthday! You have until next April 1 to take your first Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) from your IRA and employer-sponsored retirement plans, and until December to take the second distribution