What Will Social Security And Your Pension Provide?

If you have been working all your life contributing the maximum to the Social Security system, you could receive over $25,000 per year at your full retirement age ("FRA"). Of course, these figures will be adjusted for inflation. If you choose to start receiving your benefits before your full retirement age, you will receive a reduced benefit. To find out your FRA and how much your monthly benefit will be, you can use the online tools at, obtain a free form from your local SSA office, or call 1-800-772-1213.
A typical "defined benefit" plan may provide as much as 50 percent or more of your final average salary.
Contact your employer’s HR department to get an estimate of your retirement benefits.

Defined benefit and defined contribution plans

If you worked for an employer who provided an employee retirement plan, you might be entitled to retirement benefits. There are different kinds of plans in use today. A typical "defined benefit" plan is employer-funded and may provide as much as 50 percent or more of your final average salary at normal retirement age (as defined in the plan document). A "defined contribution" plan is typically employee-funded (but your employer may contribute as well, e.g., matching contributions) and will generally entitle you to a specific dollar amount at retirement that is based on the contributions made for your benefit to the plan, plus the earnings attributable to such contributions, which you can convert into retirement income. After you retire, you can generally leave the assets in the plan to continue to potentially grow tax-deferred and take distributions over time from the plan (note: in general, you must take at least the required minimum distribution amount annually the later of once you reach age 70 1/2 or, if you are not a 5% owner of the plan sponsor, retire from employment with the plan sponsor).

You should contact the personnel or human resource department of your employer to get an estimate of your retirement benefits, if any.