You may already know that it's a good idea to keep in touch with the Social Security Administration as you plan for retirement. You need to investigate information such as your full retirement age, your estimate of benefits if you retire at various hypothetical times, and how much your spouse can receive in spousal benefits.
But most people are reluctant to actually visit their local Social Security office and wait in long lines. Calling the office can be equally frustrating, as the hotline is often busy. Luckily, you now have a third option: Create an online account with Social Security, and never wait on the phone or in crowded lines again!
It's easy to sign up for your own account. Just go to the sign-up page and enter your information. You will be asked to provide your name, Social Security number, and address. You will also be asked to answer a few personal questions to verify your identity.
Once your account is active, you can perform a variety of tasks without leaving your home. If you need to change your address with the Social Security Administration, add a phone number, or provide bank account information for direct deposit of your benefits, you can do it all through your account. You can also receive estimates of future benefits, and view your earnings history. It's important to review your earnings history before you retire, to make sure Social Security will calculate your benefits correctly. You can even apply for your retirement benefits online!
If you do spot a mistake in your earnings history, or need to request a new Social Security card, you still have to complete these tasks at by calling or visiting your local office. But for most of us, creating an account on the Social Security website will save us significant time and hassle as we prepare for retirement.
This information has been provided by a Licensed Insurance Professional and is not sponsored or endorsed by the Social Security Administration or any government agency.
14486 - 2015/5/13
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