Q: What if I start collecting Social Security and then decide to go back to work? Will this reduce my benefits?
A: In short, the answer is yes… though temporarily. If your income exceeds a certain threshold before full retirement age, you will receive a smaller Social Security check. But basically, you earn credit during the period you did work, much as if you decided to delay taking benefits, as the New York Times’ Bernard noted. Her example:"Say you started benefits at age 62, but then decide to go back to work after a year. Once you turn 66, your benefits will be recalculated: the system will see that you initially planned on taking benefits four years early. But since you worked for three of those years, your check will be permanently higher because you really took benefits only one year early."