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In this series, “Social Security Secrets,” experts Larry Kotlikoff and Phil Moeller explain the most important things you need to know about this valuable retirement benefit. Kotlikoff and Moeller are co-authors of the New York Times best-seller Get What’s Yours: The Secrets to Maxing Out Your Social Security.

Phil Moeller and Larry Kotlikoff, co-authors of Get What's Yours: The Secrets to Maxing Out Your Social Security, stress that women need to be paying attention to how Social Security has a different impact on them than it does on men. Women tend to live longer than men and earn less during their time in the workforce. Therefore, they often end up having to live on a lower income in retirement, and for a longer time. A widow's quality of life can also be affected by when her husband claimed his Social Security retirement benefit; the earlier he did it, up until age 70, the less she receives monthly after his death.