A question. I may need to retire next year which is my full retirement age, but if I waited until 70, my benefit would be significantly higher. However, company reorganization will force me to retire. So, the plan is to retire at 66 and wait until 70 to collect. The question is whether or not my benefit would remain the same at 70 as it would be at 66 because I would no longer be contributing. Or, would it increase as it would if I were still working and contributing because the government would have the benefit of holding on to my money (as paultry as it is) longer. I have my 40 quarters already locked in.
And, if I do find work, I would likely not earn as much, so is the social security benefit based on the highest earning years?
It's a little complicated, but the short answer is that your benefits will be calculated based off the earnings of your most profitable 35 years of employment.
The Social Security Administration has various retirement calculators that allow you to put in your financial information and figure out what your benefits will be when you choose to start receiving them.
I'd suggest starting with that and then contacting the SSA if you need any further clarification.