ANCHOR LEAD: No matter what side you're on in the reform debate, Social Security accounts for about 40-percent of income in retirement. Even though you may be retired and no longer working, it's important to understand your benefit options and how to make the numbers "work" for you. Bobbi Owens has more. (:60)
SCRIPT: Your Financial Fitness, I'm Bobbi Owens. Prudential issued its latest edition of Innovative Strategies to Help Maximize Social Security Benefits, a white paper with strategies to maximize retirement benefits and income over the long term which also addresses costly mistakes retirees often make when it comes to their benefits. George Castineiras is a Senior Vice-President at Prudential.
CUT: (Castineiras) The most common mistake when it comes to Social Security is lack of awareness. And that's the reason we created, and update this paper because it's so relevant today for people to have a clear understanding of what their options are.
SCRIPT: Do you have any specific advice for women, as they tend to live longer?
CUT: (Castineiras) Take into consideration that you can collect a worker benefit for your husband. Collect a spousal benefit for yourself from age 66 and delay your worker benefit to age 70, and at that point convert to that worker benefit at 70, and that permanently increases your lifetime income.
SCRIPT: For more tips, and to better understand your benefit options, visit Prudential-dot-com and type social security in the search box. That's Your Financial Fitness from Prudential.
This media asset is free for editorial broadcast, print, online and radio use. It is restricted for use for other purposes.