You’re getting ready to retire and you’ve made the decision to start collecting your Social Security retirement benefits. What’s the next step? You need to actually apply for your benefits (they aren’t automatic).
Probably one of the most common Social Security questions is how to apply for Social Security benefits.
There are three ways to apply for Social Security:
1. You can apply online at www.SocialSecurity.gov. However, at this time you can not apply for Social Security survivor benefits online.
2. You can call 800-772-1213 to apply for bene
3. Or you can visit an office in person if you want to talk to an employee face to face. To find the closest office, visit the website at SocialSecurity.gov.
What You’ll Need to Apply for Social Security Retirement Benefits
You will need to provide several pieces of information in order for your application to be processed:
– Social Security number
– Name at birth, date and place of birth
– Citizenship status
– Active duty service dates
– Marital status, spouse’s name, date of birth and SSN
– Name, date of birth and SSN of any former spouses
– Names of any unmarried children under age 18
– The name and address of each company you worked for in the last two years, including estimated earnings
– If you are within 3 months of turning 65, you’ll also need to let Social Security know if you are enrolling in Medicare or not.
You may need to supply additional information if you are self employed or if you are expecting to receive a pension from a government job, but these are the basic items you will need to provide.
You should submit your Social Security application three months before you want to begin receiving them. Benefits are paid the month following the month they are due. So if you apply for benefits to start when you turn age 62, your first check will arrive the month after you turn 62.