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Innovative Strategies To Help Maximize Social Security Benefits: Updated Prudential White Paper

Many Americans are missing out on the full value of Social Security according to Prudential’s updated white paper, Innovative Strategies to Help Maximize Social Security Benefits, which outlines options and strategies that individuals can employ to maximize lifetime Social Security income. In particular, the paper has new content on strategies for those that enter retirement divorced or widowed.

According to the paper, which was issued today, limited understanding of the program is preventing many people from maximizing their benefits. The white paper also points out that over 70 percent of retirees elect to start receiving reduced Social Security benefits prior to their Full Retirement Age, and that many may be missing out on the ability to collect higher benefits over their lifetimes.

“For most, a successful retirement plan should include accumulated personal savings as well as guaranteed lifetime income from 401(k) plans and Social Security,” said George Castineiras, vice president, Total Retirement Solutions, Prudential Retirement. “With the examples and approaches illustrated in the 2012 edition of the white paper, Prudential aims to help individuals, especially women, increase their understanding of Social Security and optimize its role in their retirement planning.”

The strategies, applicable to both genders, contain a number of examples to help readers evaluate their available choices, eliminate costly mistakes, and select a claiming strategy that best suits their financial needs.

“This research highlights the advantages for women of taking spousal benefits and delaying individual benefits to maximize lifetime Social Security income,” says M. Cindy Hounsell, President, Women’s Institute for Secure Retirement. “Of real value are the practical strategies available for divorced spouses, widows, and widowers as well as the important tax considerations regarding when to take IRA withdrawals and when to claim Social Security benefits."

Click here to view a short video summarizing the benefits of strategies outlined in the paper.

Prudential Financial, Inc. (NYSE: PRU), a financial services leader with approximately $ 1,005 trillion of assets under management as of September 30, 2012, has operations in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Prudential’s diverse and talented employees are committed to helping individual and institutional customers grow and protect their wealth through a variety of products and services, including life insurance, annuities, retirement-related services, mutual funds and investment management. In the U.S., Prudential’s iconic Rock symbol has stood for strength, stability, expertise and innovation for more than a century. For more information, please visit


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