Social Security Questions?

Ask Rusty – Couple with Age Difference Planning Benefits

Ask Rusty – Couple with Age Difference Planning Benefits
Dear Rusty: I am nearing my full retirement age of 66 and given the differences in age of my wife and I, and the retirement benefits we will each receive; I was wondering what the best options are for us claiming SS and when. I am 65 and will turn 66 (my full retirement age) in September and my benefit then will be $2347/month as per the latest estimate on the SSA website. My Wife is currently 58 years old. Her full retirement age is 67, which will be in January 2028. Her estimated SS benefit at full retirement age will be $2498/month. I have read some things regarding being able to defer one of the benefit payments and receive the other (higher) amount based on certain criteria. I’m not sure if it would apply or be of benefit to us but was wondering if it would. I am looking for the best options to receive the most in benefits that would apply to us. Signed: Planning Ahead
Dear Planning: I think you’re referring to the “restricted application” which can be used to collect spousal benefits while allowing your own to grow, but I’m afraid that is not something you can take advantage of. It’s an option not available to your wife because her birth year is after the cutoff imposed for that option by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, and it’s not available to you because your wife isn’t yet eligible to collect Social Security on her own work record.
You have the option to take your full benefits in September at your full retirement age (FRA) or, if it’s financially feasible, you may also choose to delay past your FRA to claim. If you delay past your FRA you’ll earn Delayed Retirement Credits (DRCs) of 2/3rds of 1% per month of delay (8% per year of delay) up until age 70 when your benefit would be 32% more than it will be in September. Whether that’s a good choice for you depends upon how badly you need the money right now, and your health and expected longevity. If you enjoy at least average longevity (mid-80s) then you’ll get the most in cumulative lifetime benefits by waiting until age 70 to claim.
Your wife cannot collect Social Security benefits until she reaches age 62 in 2023. If she claims at that time she’ll be automatically deemed to be filing for both her own SS retirement benefit and any spousal benefit she might be due from your record. However, given the benefit estimates you’ve shared she’ll not be eligible for a spousal benefit from you (nor will you be eligible for benefits from her). Spousal benefits are only paid if 50% of the higher earner’s benefit at FRA is more than the lower earner’s FRA benefit amount. Since neither of you will be eligible for a spousal benefit, your wife should also consider delaying past her full retirement age if her personal and financial circumstances at the time permit. To do so, she will gain 24% more benefit at age 70 than she would get at her full retirement age of 67.
So, for both of you to achieve the most you can get, the longer you both delay past your respective full retirement ages the more your benefit will be, up to age 70 when the maximum is reached. Since your wife won’t reach her FRA until January 2028 but will be eligible to apply for benefits in 2023, be aware that if she applies before her FRA her benefit will be reduced (according to the number of months before her FRA that she applies), and that if she starts her benefits before her FRA and continues to work, she’ll be subject to Social Security’s earnings limit. The earnings limit changes annually, so I can’t tell you what it will be in 2023, but it will be more than the 2019 limit of $17,640. 
This article is intended for information purposes only and does not represent legal or financial guidance. It presents the opinions and interpretations of the AMAC Foundation’s staff, trained and accredited by the National Social Security Association (NSSA). NSSA and the AMAC Foundation and its staff are not affiliated with or endorsed by the Social Security Administration or any other governmental entity. To submit a question, visit our website or email us.

WCCOA Cholesterol Clinics

You must be a resident of Wood County and 25 years of age or older…..

Wood County, Ohio – The Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc. is currently scheduling their cholesterol screening clinics for July.  You must be a resident of Wood County and 25 years of age or older.  The cost is $20 for those 60 and over, $25 for those 25-59.

These screenings require an appointment and pretest instructions.

The screening panel includes:  Total Cholesterol, HDL (good cholesterol), LDL (bad cholesterol), Triglycerides, Total Cholesterol/HDL ratio and a blood glucose level.  Results will be immediately available and discussed with clients by a Registered Nurse.

Bowling Green Senior Center:  9:00 am to 11:00 am

  • July 10, 2019
  • July 19, 2019
  • July 23, 2019

 Wayne Senior Center 9:30 am to 11:30 am

  • July 12, 2019

 Perrysburg Senior Center 9:30 am to 11:30 am

  • July 18, 2019


To schedule an appointment, please call 1-800-367-4935 or 419-353-5661  and ask for the Social Services Department. 

 About the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc

The Wood County Committee on Aging was founded in September of 1973, as is dedicated to the planning and development of programs and services that will allow older adults of  Wood County to remain as independent as possible for as long as possible. As Ohio first nationally accredited senior center, the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc is working to encourage older adults to enjoy, enrich and explore this season of life.  

Care Compass Project: Navigating the Caregiving Continuum Seminar

CARE Compass is place to gather together and obtain resources to make the journey of caregiving less stressful….

May 29, 2019 – The CARE Compass project will serve as a quarterly network gathering for caregivers. CARE Compass is place to gather together and obtain resources to make the journey
of caregiving less stressful. This upcoming session will be held on June 5 at First Christian Church, 875 Haskins Road, Bowling Green, from 11am-1pm.

11 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. Occupational Therapy from Ohio Living Home Health will discuss transitional phases of mobility. The session will cover the following; when would you need to use a walker, cane, wheelchair; how to measure the height of the assisted devices properly;
where is the best place to purchase one or get one loaned to you; learn some important exercises to prevent falls and aid in maintaining balance.

11:45 a.m – 12:15 p.m. Lunch sponsored by Brookdale of Bowling Green

12:15 p.m. – 1 p.m. Presentation provided by Lindsay Watson, University of Toledo Medical Center a Senior Behavioral Specialist. This presentation will introduce the concept of behavior mapping (a system of connecting different behaviors and with their meanings and reactions),ways to identify causes of behaviors, solutions and ways to avoid adding additional medications. There will be time allotted for questions and answers.

The Care Compass Project free and open to all caregivers but requires pre-registration by calling 1-800-367-4935, 419-353-5661 or emailing Those wanting to learn about caregiving are welcome and those who are currently caregiving are encouraged to bring their care recipients. Separate caregiving sessions are provided during the training session to those community members in need of care.

The CARE Compass Project is brought to the community by: Brookdale of Bowling Green,Wood County Committee on Aging, BGSU Optimal Aging Institute, Golden Care Partners, Ohio Living Home Health and Wood County Hospital. Caregivers are also encouraged to join the Facebook Community: for an ongoing support community.

WCCOA to host a day retreat entitled, “Project Wisdom”

Held at the 577 Foundation…

Bowling Green, OH (May 29, 2019) – The Wood County Committee on Aging (WCCOA) will be holding a Retreat entitled “Project Wisdom” on Friday, June 14, 2019 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be held at the 577 Foundation, located at 577 East Front Street in Perrysburg, OH. The event is sponsored by several community partners; lunch will be provided by StoryPoint Senior Living, and snacks and flowers will be provided by the Kingston Healthcare Company.

 The morning will begin at 8:30 a.m. with registration and light refreshments will be provided by Kingston of Perrysburg.
 At 8:45 a.m. will be “Gassho Meditation and Chair Yoga” session led by certified instructor Anya Light. Gassho is a Japanese meditation technique, originating from the Reiki system of energy healing. We will perform Gassho and then flow into a series of seated yogic postures. No experience with yoga or meditation needed—come as you are!
 At 9:30 a.m. a learning session on Befriending Your Body with Reiki. In this presentation, Anya Light will offer an introduction to the Reiki system of energy healing. We will learn about various ways we can befriend our bodies through loving, compassionate attention. Anya Light, PhD, is an intuitive life coach, Reiki master, yoga instructor, and poet. She is author of Opening Love: Intentional Relationships & the Evolution of Consciousness. Currently, she is writing a book about healing trauma through spiritual practice. You can visit Anya at her healing practice in Grand Rapids, OH.
 At 10:30 a.m., Guest Speaker Dr. Judith Jackson May will present “Leadership in your own life…What does that look like? When people talk about leadership, they the focus is most often on others–how leaders serve them, empower them and motivate them. What if we turn the tables, though? What if instead of thinking about leadership in relation to others, we concentrate on the leadership we can take within our own lives? What would that look like? Judith Jackson May, Ph.D., Associate, Professor of Educational Administration and Leadership Studies at BGSU
 Lunch will be at noon, provided by StoryPoint Senior Living.

 At 1:15, participants will have a choice of two options:

o The first is a look at Unique India Textile blocks will be used for ink wooden blocking. This technique will be used on reusable canvas bags. Learn how to do create using this new technique all the while enjoying chia tea and gaining valuable information on how you can integrate Holistic health into your life. Choose this option to create your own sample! o Lia Ricci, is a Clinical Holistic Health Practitioner and Holistic Life Coach o Practicing in Bowling Green, Ohio. She studied Clinical Aromatherapy, Energetic Healing, Clinical Hypnotherapy, Medical Herbalism, Neuro Linguistic Programming, Clinical Reflexology & Touch for Health Kinesiology. Ms. Ricci is a Reiki Master and graduate of New York City’s Lincoln Recovery Center’s Acu Detox Specialist o Certification program. Choose this option to create your own sample!

o The second option is a Watercolor Painting Exploration with Marybeth Lengel. Relax while creating your own unique nature based watercolor picture. Enjoy time for meditation, relaxation and sharing with others.

 Closing for the day is at 2:30pm, where participants will receive flowers and gift bags sponsored by Kingston of Perrysburg. There will also be an evaluation of the day submitted by participants to improve future events!

Seating is limited to 25 individuals. Cost to register is $15. Participants are recommended to bring comfortable walking shoes, to dress in layers so as to adjust for indoor temperature variation, and to be ready to engage, relax, and meet new people! For further details or to register, please contact the Programs department at WCCOA by calling (419) 353-5661 or (800) 367-4935, or by e-mailing When registering, please specify your choice of session: A – Ink Wood Blocking with Lia Ricci, Asherah’s Garden, Bowling Green, Ohio OR B – Watercolor Exploration with Marybeth Lengel. Vegetarian lunch options are available upon request.

The mission of the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc., shall be to provide older adults with services and programs which empower them to remain independent and improve the quality of their lives.

For information on programs and services, please contact the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc., at (419) 353-5661, (800) 367-4935 or

UPDATED: Briar Hill Hosting Resource Fair INDOORS!

It’s going to rain – moving INDOORS! Win a Fitbit….Today, May 29th, 2 – 4

Briar Hill Health Campus, 600 Sterling Drive, North Baltimore,  is planning a Senior Resource Fair next Wednesday, May 29 from 2:oo to 4:00 pm. 

Information booths from local senior resources, refreshments, and door prizes will be available.

Bring a canned good to donate and be entered into a raffle.

Area businesses and  providers are asked to contact Briar Hill Health Campus to register for a table, or for more information.



Study Finds Wood County Retirement Living Among Best in Ohio

for Living mainly on Social Security…

Relying heavily on Social Security as your main source of income in retirement can make budgeting difficult – especially when it comes for housing, which may be the largest category in your spending. There are, however, places where Social Security goes further than others and in a new study, SmartAsset has delved into the data to find out where. In its fifth annual study, SmartAsset analyzed Social Security income, cost of living data, and taxes across all counties to determine where people are getting the most mileage out of Social Security, and Wood County ranked among the top spots in Ohio.

Image by silviarita from Pixabay 


For a look at how the leaders in Ohio compared, check out the table below:

RankCountyCost of LivingAnnual Social SecuritySocial Security Taxed?Social Security Goes Furthest Index
1Geauga, OH$18,979$21,302No85.16
2Fulton, OH$17,967$19,759No82.94
3Henry, OH$18,461$20,156No82.53
4Harrison, OH$17,674$18,804No80.17
5Huron, OH$17,693$18,611No79.28
6Medina, OH$19,102$20,006No79.22
7Warren, OH$19,486$20,378No79.17
8Delaware, OH$20,068$20,885No78.85
9Champaign, OH$17,693$18,492No78.78
10Wood, OH$18,291$19,075No78.72

The full study results, methodology, and interactive map can be found here:



Representative Ghanbari Honors Wood County’s Nonagenarians, Two Centenarians 

The celebration included an introduction of each honoree, a slideshow highlighting their lives, musical entertainment and awards

COLUMBUS — State Representative Haraz N. Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg) recognized 70 Wood County residents celebrating a birthday of 90 or older during a special dinner Monday in Bowling Green. 

“It was a tremendous honor to join these residents, as well as their family and friends, in recognizing this truly amazing milestone,” said Representative Ghanbari. “I was blessed to meet folks like Ms. Margaret Neifer who is 101 years old, and other Wood County residents like World War II Army and D-Day veteran Mr. Harry Swartz.”

State Representative Haraz N. Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg), left, with Harry Swartz of Fostoria during a celebration honoring Wood County’s nonagenarians, Monday, May 20, 2019, in Bowling Green, Ohio. Swartz, a World War II Army Veteran who served in D-Day, was one of 70 honorees recognized during the celebration coordinated by the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc. (Photo courtesy/Representative Haraz N. Ghanbari)

Representative Ghanbari presented each honoree with an official House of Representatives Commendation co-signed by Speaker of the House Larry Householder (R-Glenford). 

Coordinated by the Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc., the annual 90’s Plus Spectacular Event was held at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. The celebration included an introduction of each honoree, a slideshow highlighting their lives, musical entertainment and awards presented by Representative Ghanbari and other elected officials. The dinner menu included pork loin, parmesan risotto, roasted cauliflower and carrots, tossed salad, fresh fruit and dessert.

“It was a delight to serve each guest dinner at the conclusion of the awards ceremony,” said Representative Ghanbari. “What an awesome evening to celebrate these nonagenarians and older residents. There is much we can learn from each of these honorees.”

State Representative Haraz N. Ghanbari is serving his first term in the Ohio House of Representatives after being appointed in March of 2019. He represents the 3rd Ohio House District, serving residents of Wood County.



Last day for Leisure Time in Wood County exhibit will be May 19, 2019

Last day for Leisure Time in Wood County exhibit will be May 19, 2019

Sunday, May 19, 2019 will be the last day to take a tour of the exhibit THE RETURN TO NORMALCY: A Life of Leisure in Wood County, 1920-1939. The exhibit features then Presidential candidate Warren G. Harding, desired a return to the pre-World War I lifestyle or a “Return to Normalcy.” Soldiers returned from WWI, to their homes in Wood County with a desire to succeed, to relax, and to enjoy life. Advancements in technology also created opportunities for fun in this rural community. 

As THE RETURN TO NORMALCY: A Life of Leisure in Wood County, 1920-1939 leaves, the Museum is preparing for a new exhibit to open. Jacob A. Riis: How the Other Half Lives will open on June 16, 2019, and run until August 11, 2019. This traveling exhibit from the National Endowment for the Humanities’ touring program, “NEH on the Road,” documents the squalid living conditions of New York’s poor immigrants and laborers in “The Gilded Age” of the early 20th century. This contrast to the growing wealth of millionaires, such as Carnegie and Rockefeller, inspired many reforms of working-class housing. Riis was a Danish-born American photographer (1849-1914). This exhibit was made possible with a generous donation from Edwin & Irma Wolf.

The museum will be open for self-guided tours Monday – Friday, 10 AM – 4 PM and weekends from 1 PM – 4 PM (closed on government holidays). Admission is $7 for adults and $3 for children, with discounts for seniors, students, and military. 

All events detailed at or by following the Wood County Historical Museum on social media. The Museum is located at 13660 County Home Road in Bowling Green. 

Knowledge is Power

Understanding the rights of nursing home residents…

(Family Features) An estimated 1.4 million older adults and people with disabilities live in nursing homes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If a nursing home participates in Medicare or Medicaid – and most do – it must meet requirements “to promote and protect the rights of each resident.”

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

This means nursing homes are required to care for their residents in a way that enhances the quality of life for residents, respects their dignity and ensures they are able to make choices for themselves.

Established by federal law, the “Residents’ Bill of Rights,” states if you live in a nursing home, you are entitled to rights including:

  • The right to be fully informed in a language you understand of all aspects of your residency.
  • The right to participate in all aspects of your care.
  • The right to make independent choices based on your needs and preferences.
  • The right to privacy and confidentiality.
  • The right to safe and appropriate transfer and discharge, including the right to appeal decisions.
  • The right to visits from friends, family, providers and other people of your choosing.
  • The right to participate in social, religious and community activities.
  • The right to organize and participate in resident groups, often called resident councils.
  • The right to complain without fear of repercussions.
  • The right to be free from discrimination.
  • The right to be free from abuse, neglect and restraint.
  • The right to adequate medical care and treatment.
  • The right to get information about alternatives to nursing homes.

Some states have laws and regulations that establish additional rights for nursing home residents. Some states also guarantee a similar set of rights for people who live in assisted living or similar settings.

Every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam have an advocate, called a Long-Term Care Ombudsman, for residents of nursing homes, board and care and assisted living facilities and similar residential care facilities. These advocates work to resolve problems affecting residents’ health, safety, welfare and rights. Residents, their families and others have the right to contact their local Ombudsman program to help them understand their rights, learn about community resources and work through problems.

For more information on these rights, and to find your local Ombudsman program, visit The website also provides information on other programs and services available to help older adults and people with disabilities who need help with daily tasks, like getting dressed, bathing or cooking, to receive this support in their own homes. These programs can help delay or avoid nursing home care, guide nursing home residents looking to transition back into the community and support family members serving as caregivers.

Administration for Community Living

Life’s “Happy Hour” Now Peaks at 70?

We’re living longer and happier in the 21st Century, says AMAC

We’re living longer and happier in the 21st Century, says AMAC
WASHINGTON, DC, Apr 19 — Life’s happy hour doesn’t occur until we are getting on in years, peaking at about age 70, according to one of the largest studies of its kind. The research was conducted by Harvard Medical School and its affiliate, McLean Hospital and the results of the analysis was reported recently published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology.
Dan Weber, president of the Association of Mature American Citizens [AMAC], speculates that the healthier regime of senior citizens these days has a lot to do with the fact that it’s getting easier to grow old. “After all, the trend of adopting healthier lifestyles combined with the fast-paced advancements in medicine go a long way toward providing us with reason to be happy.”
Dr. Laura Germine, senior author of the research report, told reporters the study saw “declines in many visual perceptual abilities as we get older, but here we did not see such declines in the perception of happiness. These findings fit well with other research showing that older adults tend to have more positive emotions and a positive outlook.”
The fact is, says Weber, people are living longer than ever before. He cites The Centenarian, which keeps track of longevity statistics and which reports that the country with the most 100-year-olds is the U.S. It is estimated that there are currently more than 72,000 centenarians in America. And, the Web site predicts, “If the population of centenarians continues to increase at its current rate of expansion there could be close to 1 million people of 100 years of age or more by 2050 residing in the US.”
UC Berkeley professor Kenneth Wachter, a leading authority in the field of demographics, says that the extent to which human beings can live is “yet in sight. Not only do we see mortality rates that stop getting worse with age, we see them getting slightly better over time.”
The Boston University School of Medicine boasts that it has been conducting the world’s largest and most comprehensive study of centenarians. It is called the New England Centenarian Study [NECS] and when it was established one person out of 10,000 living in the U.S. Its most recent calculations puts the number of centenarians at one out of 5,000. And, the NECS reports that the number of American supercentenarians is growing as well.
Dr. Thomas Perls, director of the study, says that health related behavior — what we eat, how we exercise, etc. — is responsible for 70% of our aging process, with genetics accounting for 30%. But, he says, for supercentenarians, it’s 70% genetic.
AMAC’s Weber notes that the NCES offers us a chance to calculate our own longevity based on 40 questions about our health and that of family members. “To paraphrase Star Trek’s very own Vulcan, Mr. Spock, live long and be happy.”

Poetry Contest Winners Named

WCCOA countywide event entitled, “Dreams”

Subject: Poetry Contest Winners proclaimed in a countywide event entitled, “Dreams” For more information call: Danielle Brogley, Director of Programs, at 419-353-5661 or email Bowling Green, OH (April 20, 2019) –The Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc. held its fourteenth annual poetry banquet and drew in nineteen entries from all over Wood County. The theme this year was “Dreams.” The poems share stories of life, hope, dreams and love. We were looking for poetry that, in some way, celebrates the heart and souls of members of Wood County as they continue to celebrate their lives.
The declared winner was Vernagaye Sullivan of Wayne, Ohio, author of “End of a Dream.”

End of a Dream

A Caribou on a Wall,
So sad to see
Magnificence silenced,
Mere reminder of life,
Of pulsing energy, halted
Of continuance ended
On the path to extinction

The winner selected will receive a $50 gift card provided by Kathryn Williams, Independent Insurance Agent, Specializing in Medicare Products, Licensed in OH, IN, MI, NC, TX

When asked about judging the Poetry Contest, Bowling Green State University General Studies Writing Instructor Chad Michael Van Buskirk commented, “This was an especially rewarding collection of poems. Judging the poetry contest was a wonderful opportunity to engage with the fascinating and meaningful experiences and insights of our community’s older adults.´ Another special thank you goes to Jessica Zinz-Cheresnicks from BGSU for judging this collection of poems.

The Wood County Committee on Aging would like to extend a sincere thank you to all of the entries for their contributions to the contest. The contest committee would like to extend a special thank you to Bowling Green State University for assisting with the judging of the entries. To read the winning poems visit our blog at