Are you 18 years of age or older?
Do you have a U.S. social security number?
Do you have a valid U.S. mailing address?
Do you have an email address?
If you can answer yes to all the questions above, then you can create and open your “My Social Security” account online with the Social Security Administration (SSA).
The day of having to visit your social security office and put up with all the frustrations that accompany with that visit are over.
Gong online has never been safer or more convenient. Your online “My Social Security” account can help you plan or be active in for your retirement with ease.
In the article we will discuss:
- how you can create your online account
- explain the safety tools to keep your personal information safe
- what steps are necessary to create the account
- how you can use it to your advantage
I have personally created my account and now I can stay up to date on all of my information. Also, I can use the account for the planning I require so that I can make the best decisions about my future in retirement.
Opening this account will give you access to your personal social security benefits that are calculated and based on your last 35 years of active employment.
According to the Social Security Administration (SA), over 30 million Americans have signed up and created their “My Social Security” accounts since May 2012. This account will give you access and the easiest way to communicate to the SSA.
Many are signing up for this convenient way to access their benefits. This method reduces or eliminates the need to communicate with the SSA by phone or a visit to your local office.
You will get quicker access to your information and you will not have to wait for information to get to you by regular mail. You will be able to get your questions answered on the spot and you will have access to all of your personal social security information in a safe and easy manner.
Are you still not sure you want to do this online?
Is My Information Safe and Secure?
According to the SSA, they maintain a robust cyber-security system, but you as the individual play a key role in your online security. This is by the means of creating a robust password and secondary methods of identification.
After and when you create your account, each time you will be asked to enter a security code that will be sent to you by email for added security. This is to ensure the right person is logging into the account.
If you are creating your account, you will be asked if you want an extra layer of protection. This is optional, but I recommend you do this as it will only make your account even more secure.
It will look like this:
After this, just follow the instructions.
You can always go back and add this feature at a later date.
Never give your personal information across the phone or even in an email.
If you get this request and they say they are from the Social Security Administration (SSA), this is a phishing attempt on your personal information.
Never give up any information unless it is through a secure site such as “My Social Security” account.
To start this process, go to: https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount.
Once in, here are the general steps to create your account.
My Social Security Login:
On this opening page you will be asked to enter Username and Password. If you do not have an account, You will need to create one.
To create an account, hit the “Create An Account Button” at the bottom of the log in screen.
Next you will be prompted to email your security code for further verification:
After completing this step of the log in process, you will be asked to read, understand, and sign to the Terms of Service from the SSA.
You are now in your new “My Social Security” online account.
What Happens Now?
Now within your account, you will be able to access your personal information and how it is used to calculate your social security benefit or your disability benefit if needed. It explains your full or selected retirement age and how that will affect your benefits; and explains survivor benefits for your spouse.
You can access your salary history that is a key ingredient to your benefit calculation. Here you will be able to verify that this salary history is correct as it will affect your monthly benefit in the future.
At this point, you can go paperless and see your yearly social security statements online.
When it is time to apply for your social security benefits, you can do so online with this account. This process usually takes about 15-20 minutes to compete.
Social Security will contact you if you need to provide additional documents than what is asked for in the application process.
You will receive both an email and hand delivered confirmation of this process. At anytime later, you can go into your account and check on this application process.
If you have reached your full retirement age, you can apply for Medicare and retirement benefits on the same application process.
What are the Pro’s and Con’s of using this online service and system:
- Very high levels of security around your personal information.
- Finger tip access to all your personal and salary history information.
- SSA tools for preparing, planning, and executing your retirement benefits.
- You can go paperless and avoid any risks of personal information being sent across regular mail service.
- Quicker access to your information.
- You can apply and request your SS benefits online.
- You do not have to call or visit the local SS office to have your questions answered.
- You can request a new SS card if your lose yours.
- You can not compare current benefits based on a former or deceased spouse’s earnings.
- You can not request for Social Security’s Supplemental Security Income program (SSI) online.
- You can not request a name correction on your SSA card after marriage or divorce.
- You can not correct erroneous financial information online.
All the items in the Con’s section require an in person visit to the local SS office.
As you can see, you simply can not do everything you might need to do online as somethings require personal visited to the local SS offices when supporting documentation is expected for processing.
However, there is a lot you can do from the convenience of your home and it can be safe to do so.
Avoid the lines and the hassle of going to your local Social Security office. Save your time for better things.
I personally have created my online account and I have provided the extra layer of protection.
I highly recommend that if you are at that stage in life where you are planning and preparing for the process of taking your Social Security Benefits, you do the same and create your own “My Social Security” account.
You can do that by starting here: https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/.
Sign up now today, it is for your benefit and will give you access to all the tools and knowledge of that is provided by the SSA.
These are the only requirements for you to create your account, so don’t delay:
- Are you 18 years of age or older?
- Do you have a U.S. social security number?
- Do you have a valid U.S. mailing address?
- Do you have an email address?
I hope you have found this article informative and helpful.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave those below and I will get back to you ASAP!