Social security retirement benefits are payable based on the individual's earnings history as well as age of retirement. Full retirement age is presently 66 years old. The benefit is reduced if electing to receive the benefit earlier. The minimum age to start collecting is presently 62 years old. An individual can elect to receive benefits under the spouse's earnings history instead. An individual may receive up to 50% of their spouse's benefit. This does not impact the spouse's benefit in any way. An individual may elect to receive under their spouse's benefit if their earnings history was substantially higher.