The Social Security statement that I got in the mail last week–you know, the paper that tells you what you’d get if you retired at 62, at 66, at 70 or how you get if you become disabled — may be the last one I get. No, not because I am disabled or retiring, but because the Social Security Administration is working to provide the statements online by the end of the year. Some advocates for older Americans say an online option is insufficient, especially for people who may not have computer skills or access to computers.
The statements have been mailed out since the 1980s cost $70 million a year to mail, according to the Social Security Administration Commissioner. They include a history of taxable earnings for each year — so people can check for mistakes — as well as the total amount of Social Security and Medicare taxes paid over the lifetime of the worker. The statements provide estimates of monthly benefits, based on current earnings and when a worker plans to retire. Workers can claim early retirement benefits starting at age 62. Full benefits are available at age 66, a threshold that is gradually increasing to 67 for people born in 1960 or later.
Claims for Social Security Retirement and Social Security Disability benefits are up significantly since the nation’s economy soured in 2008. About 2.7 million people applied for retirement benefits last year, a 17 percent increase from 2008, according to agency statistics. About 3.2 million people applied for Social Security Disability benefits last year, a 23 percent increase. But, remember, just because they apply does not mean that they will receive Social Security Disability benefits. Often times, the services of an attorney are needed in order to secure SSD benefits.
Attorney Matthew Noyes assists those applying for Social Security Disability benefits. It is a long battle against the Social Security Administration, and you shouldn’t try to do it alone. Click here for a free case consultation with Attorney Matthew Noyes.