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During your working years, your wages are posted to your Social Security record, and you receive earnings credits based on those wages. We use these credits to determine your eligibility for retirement benefits and for disability or survivors benefits if you should become disabled or die.
Each year the amount of earnings needed for a credit rises as average earnings levels rise. In 2000, you receive one credit for each $780 of earnings, up to the maximum of four credits per year. The maximum wage contribution for 2000 was increased to $76,200 from $72,200 for 1999. One credit has also increased to $780 from $740 for 1999.
Everyone born in 1929 or later needs 40 credits to be eligible for retirement benefits. Therefore since you can earn four credits per year, you will need at least 10 years of work to become eligible for retirement benefits.
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified elder lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local elder attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.