Advice for older workers forced to retire early amid COVID-19 pandemic

Posted at 1:35 PM, Jun 30, 2020

As Americans slowly return to work, older workers are finding the current economic situation much harder to navigate than their younger counterparts.

Many large companies, including the airlines, are offering early retirement packages. For older workers, those buyouts come with uncertainty for their financial future.

“These are tough times, especially for older workers,” said Susan Weinstock with the AARP.

Weinstock’s concern is older workers are being forced out of work without enough saved for retirement. According to AARP, half of full-time workers experience job loss after the age of 50. It typically takes them double the time to get back into the work force as it does a younger worker, and even if they find a job, they end up making less money.

For those over the age of 50 who have suddenly lost their job because of COVID-19, there's also less time to make up retirement savings that were lost.

“We know saving through work is the best way to save for retirement, and when you don’t have that option it makes it a lot harder,” Weinstock said.

Weinstock's advice if you're over the age of 50 and out of work is to use this time to upscale or re-scale. She suggests finding an online class. Showing employers that you're a lifelong learner can make you more marketable.

“We want to make sure older workers are able to recover from this, along with everybody else in the economy,” Weinstock added.

For those working from home, Weinstock recommends taking the money you might have spent on commuting and putting it into your retirement account.