15 States Where Retirees Get the Most Social Security

Wealthy senior couple outside their home
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com

How big will your Social Security payments be when you retire? Will you get as much as retirees in the states where the average benefit is highest?

We used new data from Social Security’s latest annual statistical report to rank the 15 states where average payments are greatest for retired workers. The report reflects data from December 2019, the latest such data available.

Our ranking also includes the average monthly amounts paid to to widows and widowers collecting survivors’ benefits, and to the disabled.

Survivors may get as much as 100% of their late spouse’s Social Security payment, although maximizing survivor benefits can be tricky, as we report in “This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked.”

Nationally, the average monthly Social Security payment to retired workers is $1,503. State by state, the average benefit for retirees ranges from a low of $1,399 to a high of $1,663.

It’s tempting to assume that beneficiaries in the top-ranked states are more flush that their peers elsewhere. But that’s not necessarily so, since the cost of living also is higher in most of these bigger-benefit states.

Our list starts with the state with the 15th-highest average retirement benefit payment. The state with the highest average benefit check is last.

15. Utah

Arches National Park
Anton Foltin / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,548.75
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,553.94
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,196.12

14. Virginia

Arlington, Virginia
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,553.37
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,454.35
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,206.89

13. New York

New York City
littlenySTOCK / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,553.93
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,473.87
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,229.19

12. Kansas

Clinton Lake
Sarah Renee Peltzman / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,556.97
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,522.30
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,166.19

11. Massachusetts

Massachusetts Capitol
Stefan Ugljevarevic / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,557.35
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,487.12
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,200.10

10. Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
James Kirkikis / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,558.30
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,503.21
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,201.17

9. Indiana

Indianapolis
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,562.16
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,541.77
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,199.48

8. Minnesota

Duluth, Minnesota
welcomia / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,569.14
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,511.27
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,185.33

7. Washington

Tacoma, Washington
Druid007 / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,582.81
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,534.66
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,221.08

6. Michigan

Detroit, Michigan
Harold Stiver / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,590.98
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,556.27
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,228.28

5. Maryland

Harpers Ferry National Historic Park
KhanIM / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,598.79
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,505.06
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,249.15

4. New Hampshire

Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,618.53
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,571.00
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,237.86

3. Delaware

Delaware Bay
Bruce Goerlitz Photo / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,632.66
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,561.06
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,286.17

2. Connecticut

Snowstorm in Stamford, Connecticut
barbsimages / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,658.75
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,596.49
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,239.10

1. New Jersey

Morristown, New Jersey
mandritoiu / Shutterstock.com

Average monthly benefit among:

  • Retired workers (nondisabled): $1,662.82
  • Widows and widowers (nondisabled): $1,575.04
  • All disabled beneficiaries (includes workers, widows and widowers and children): $1,315.53

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

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