Documents Needed To Apply For Social Security Retirement Benefits
Applying for Social Security retirement benefits might seem like a challenging process, but a little bit of preparation goes a long way. In fact, the Social Security Administration office now allows applicants to apply online. If youve already decided youre at the right age for retirement and you want to get the process started, the application isnt overly difficult to fill out and submit.
One of the most important things to do before applying for Social Security benefits is gathering up all the paperwork you will need. Gathering the documents needed to apply for Social Security retirement benefits before you submit your application is what will make the process simple. For example, the SSA will need to verify your birthday and the fact that you have United States citizenship, so having your original birth certificate can go a long way.
Is It A Good Idea To Enroll In Medicare Before I Sign Up For Social Security
Q: Is it a good idea to enroll in Medicare before I sign up for Social Security?
A: The need for health coverage can arise before your need for Social Security benefits. Social Security and Medicare are interrelated, but its possible to sign up for one without the other. Youre allowed to collect Social Security as early as age 62. Meanwhile, Medicare eligibility begins for most people at age 65.
At What Age Is Social Security No Longer Taxed
At 65 to 67, depending on the year of your birth, you are at full retirement age and can get full Social Security retirement benefits tax-free. However, if youre still working, part of your benefits might be subject to taxation. The IRS adds the figures for your earnings and half your Social Security benefits.
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You’re Claiming A Spousal Benefit And You’re At Or Over Your Fra
Everyone is assigned a full retirement age based on their birth year. For today’s workers, that’s somewhere between 66 and 67. This is the age at which you become eligible for your full benefit based on your work history.
If you’re claiming a benefit on your spouse’s work record, it’s also the age at which you become eligible for your maximum benefit. Similar to the scenario above, delaying benefits past this age won’t increase your checks any further, so there’s no sense in doing so.
If you’re not sure whether your Social Security checks will be based on your work history or your spouse’s, you can find out by contacting the Social Security Administration. Or you can create a my Social Security account. This will tell you what, if any, benefit you qualify for on your own work record. And if you know what kind of benefit your spouse is getting, you can enter this in and it will tell you what kind of a spousal benefit you can get.
The Social Security Administration will automatically give you the larger of your own benefit or a spousal benefit if you qualify for both. But keep in mind that you can’t claim a spousal benefit unless your spouse is already receiving checks. So if they haven’t signed up already, make sure they do so first so you can get your spousal benefit.
How Do I Sign Up For Medicare
If you already get Social Security benefits, well automatically enroll you in Medicare Hospital Insurance and Medical Insurance . Well mail you all the information you need a few months before you become eligible.Note: Residents of Puerto Rico or foreign countries wont automatically receive Part B. They must elect this benefit.If you dont get Social Security benefits and are not ready to apply for them yet, you should sign up for Medicare three months before your 65th birthday.The easiest way to apply for Medicare is by using our online application.If you dont wish to apply online, make an appointment by calling us at 1-800-772-1213 , 8:00 am 7:00 pm, Monday through Friday.Important Information about Medical Insurance CoverageBecause you must pay a premium for Part B coverage, you can turn it down. However, if you decide to sign up for Part B later, your coverage can be delayed and you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Part B coverage. Your monthly premium will go up 10 percent for each 12-month period you were eligible for Part B, but didnt sign up for it unless you qualify for a special enrollment period.More Information
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If Health Problems Force You To Retire Early
Sometimes health problems force people to retire early. If you cannot work because of health problems, you should consider applying for Social Security disability benefits. The amount of the disability benefit is the same as a full, unreduced retirement benefit. If you are receiving Social Security disability benefits when you reach full retirement age, those benefits will be converted to retirement benefits.
Required Information About Your Present And Past Employment
In addition to providing a wide range of information about yourself, you will also need to know numerous things about your employment history for your retirement benefits application. When applying, you will need to disclose who you worked for over the last two years and where those businesses are located. The amount of money that you earned over the last two years will also be required.
Other information regarding employment that is required to apply for benefits includes either a record of your earnings or a copy of your Social Security Statement. Individuals who dont have a copy of the statement can get one online by creating an account with the SSA. Other factors that will need to be disclosed on the application include:
- The dates you started and ended U.S. military service before 1968 if applicable
- Whether you or your spouse have even been employed with the railroad industry
- Whether youve been unable to work at any point in the last 14 months due to injuries, illnesses, or conditions and what dates work was not possible
- Whether you have received any Social Security credits in another country under its system
- Whether you expect to get or qualify for an annuity or pension from your employment under the Federal government or a state or local subdivision
Earn Ssa Work Credits In Some Countries
You may not have enough credits from your work in the United States to qualify for retirement benefits. But, you may be able to count your work credits from another country. The SSA has agreements with 24 countries. If you earned credits in one of those countries, they can help you qualify for U.S. benefits.
Step By Step Instructions For Filling Out This Application
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Social Security Benefits For Surviving Spouses
If your spouse was receiving Social Security benefits upon their death, you must report the death as soon as possible. You can call the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. on weekdays or visit your local Social Security office in person.
You are eligible for a one-time, lump-sum death benefit of $255 from Social Security if:
- You were receiving benefits on your spouses record at the time of death, or
- If you were living in the same household as your spouse at the time of death.
Any benefits received in the name of your spouse during the month of death or later must be returned to the Social Security Administration as soon as possible.
If your spouse worked long enough under Social Security, you may be eligible for Social Security benefits. You must be age 60 or older or disabled and 50 or older to qualify.
How much youll receive depends on the percentage of your spouses benefit as well as your age and the type of benefit youre eligible for.
You must apply for survivor benefits in person. You can call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 to request an appointment.
When Can You File For Social Security
The earliest when you can apply for Social Security benefits is at age 61 and nine months, and you can expect to receive your first payment four months laterthe month after your birthday. Typically, Social Security benefits are paid the month after they are due or must be specified. For example, the Social Security website states that an individual who wants their benefits to start in May will receive their first benefit check in June.
For example, if you turn 62 on Dec. 15, then your first full month of eligibility is January, and your payment for that month will arrive in February. If you have already reached age 62 and met all other eligibility criteria, then you may begin collecting benefits in the same month when you apply if you specify, although your first payment still would not arrive until the following month.
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How Do I Create My Cra User Id And Password
When you create your user ID and password, we recommend that you:
- make them easy for you to remember and hard for others to guess
- avoid using personal information such as your name, social insurance number, mailing address, or email address and
- always keep this information secure and do not share it with anyone.
You will not be able to proceed with the creation of a user ID and password unless you follow these rules:
When To Apply If You’re Turning 70
Social Security won’t automatically start sending you checks once you turn 70, with one exception: If you took benefits after reaching full retirement age and then suspended your benefits to earn delayed credits of 8% per year, your benefits will automatically restart at 70.
Otherwise, you’ll need to file an application. The earliest you can file for Social Security is four months before you want your benefits to start.
Regardless of when you file, make sure you specify that you want your benefit to begin the month you turn 70 to get the maximum amount. Social Security pays a month behind, so expect your first payment to arrive the month after your 70th birthday. For example, if you were born on May 10, you’d request that your benefits start in May and receive the first payment in June.
But there is an exception if you were born on the 1st of the month. For those people, Social Security calculates benefits as if they were born the previous month. So if you were born May 1, you’d request that your benefits start in April. Your first payment would arrive in May.
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Applying For Social Security Benefits Online
The first thing you will need to do to apply for benefits online is creating a Social Security account on the SSA website. This account has a lot of great features and can be used to track your earnings over your lifetime based on reports made to the SSA. When you have an account, you can check in and see if all the information is correct. If not, you can notify the SAA of the mistake and show past tax returns or pay stubs to correct the error.
Once you have an online account and your documents are ready, you can start your retirement benefits application online. The process is simple and most people will have no issue getting through the application alone. However, your local Social Security office can provide help if its needed. You can also reach out by telephone to the SSA for help if you have issues completing your application.
What Is The Future Of Social Security
Social Security is expected to run out of cash reserves in 2034, according to the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, the retirement benefits account managed by the Social Security Administration.
However, this doesnt mean the program would be bankrupt and unable to pay out benefits. If Congress does nothing to reform the system by 2034, Social Security would still be able to pay 79 percent of promised benefits until 2090.
Social Security has run out of cash reserves before. Congress reformed the program in the 1980s by taxing benefits based on income levels and by gradually increasing the full retirement age from 65 to 67.
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What Do You Mean By Current Postal Code Or Zip Code
As part of your personal authentication information, you will have to enter the postal code or ZIP code of your current mailing address. If you live outside Canada and the United States, the postal code or ZIP code is not required. The postal code or ZIP code field is not case sensitive and may or may not include spaces or dashes.
Social Security Benefits If Youre Married
Determining Social Security calculations is a bit more complicated if you are married because you have the option to base benefits on your spouses salary history.
If the lesser earning spouses benefits are based on the higher earning spouses, then the limit of those earnings will be 50 percent of the higher earning spouses benefit amount.
To illustrate this, lets talk about A and B, a married couple.
- A makes significantly more money than B.
- A makes so much more money that As monthly Social Security benefits are going to be more than twice of Bs, based on Bs salary history.
- The good news for B is that they can choose to have their Social Security benefits based on As salary history and can receive as much as 50 percent of As monthly benefit. This is the case even if B didnt hold a job outside the home.
On the other hand, if Bs monthly benefit would have been more than half of As, based on Bs salary history, then B can claim that amount.
In short, B can claim the higher of these two possibilities: Bs own Social Security earnings or half of As.
This all assumes that B doesnt begin claiming benefits until B reaches full retirement age. If B begins claiming earlier, then Bs benefits will be less. In addition, if B is claiming benefits based on As earnings, then B does not benefit by waiting later than full retirement age.
B will not be given more monthly benefits if B waits until age 70, for example, based on As earnings.
What Documents Do You Need To Apply For Retirement Benefits
We request different documents depending on your circumstances. You can help by being ready to provide the information and documents listed below. You can also use our Checklist For The Online Medicare, Retirement, And Spouses Application to help you gather the information you need to apply.
Documents we may ask for include:
- Your Social Security card or a record of your number.
- Your original birth certificate, a copy certified by the issuing agency, or other proof of your age.We must see the original document, or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies.
- If you were not born in the U.S., proof of U.S. citizenship or lawful alien status. We must see the original document, or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We cannot accept documents if they have expired. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies.
- A copy of your U.S. military service paper if you served before 1968. A photocopy is acceptable.
- A copy of your W-2 form and/or self-employment tax return for last year. A photocopy is acceptable.
We will return all documents and photocopies unless specifically told otherwise.
My Account For Individuals
You will have to complete two steps.
Step 1 Provide personal information
- Enter your social insurance number.
- Enter your date of birth.
- Enter your current postal code or ZIP code.
- Enter an amount you entered on one of your income tax and benefit returns. Have a copy of your returns handy. To register, a return for one of these two years must have been filed and assessed.
- Create a CRA user ID and password.
- Create your security questions and answers. You can also decide if you want a persistent cookie added to your computer, so you can access CRA sign-in services using that same computer later without being asked for more identification.
After you complete step one of the registration process, you will have access to limited tax information on My Account. After you enter your CRA security code, you will have access to the full suite of services available in My Account, as well as the Auto-fill my return service.
Step 2 Enter the CRA security code
To access your account, return to My Account for Individuals, select “CRA sign in,” and enter your CRA user ID and password. When prompted, enter your CRA security code.
You can sign into CRA sign-in services with a Sign-in Partner. This option lets you sign in with a user ID and password that you may already have, such as for online banking. For more information, see Sign-in Partners Help and FAQs.
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