Retirement

Be Ready For This Journey and the Next

July 28, 2016 • By

Last Updated: August 4, 2021

family at beachYou packed your bathing suit and beach towels. The sunscreen is handy and ready to apply. Your hat is firmly on your head while you sport those stylish shades. The time is finally here, and you’re going on vacation.

Hooray!

Before you get in the car, where are you with that other checklist? You know the one — for the longer vacation you’ll take someday. Are your ducks in a row for your retirement?

With some planning, your retirement dreams can come true. And it only takes a checklist, like the one you made for your vacation!

First, start by opening your personal my Social Security account. A personal my Social Security account is an excellent tool that helps you plan for the future. It lets you verify your earnings on your personal Social Security Statement — your future retirement benefit depends on your earnings throughout your career. You can view your Statement at any time; it gives you a good picture of what your future benefits will be. When you are ready to retire, you can even go online to apply for benefits from your home or office, with no risk of sunburn.

The advantages of having a my Social Security account don’t stop after you retire. Once you start receiving benefits, you can manage them with a my Social Security account. Setting up a my Social Security account is easy, convenient, and secure.

Another great tool to help you plan for a secure retirement is our Retirement Estimator. It provides you information about your future Social Security benefits while running different scenarios. You can use the Retirement Estimator to plug in different earnings numbers and retirement dates to help you decide the best time for you to retire. When that time comes, you can apply for retirement benefits online.

These services will put you on your way to the retirement of your dreams. It won’t take much of your time. Your vacation awaits, after all.


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Deputy Commissioner, Office of Communications

Comments

  1. tony

    The SSA OIG CDI unit works with state and local law enforcement agencies. They should send out notices suspending their driver licenses unless they can provide documents from their doctor or psychiatrist/psychologist that they don’t have a “severe” psychiatric disorder. Then you can kick them off Social Security disability if they provide the documents. It will be similar to kicking them off mental disability for not wanting a representative payee and being their own payee.

    Why is the SSA approving them when they certify to the State Driver License Office that they don’t have a severe psychiatric disorder?

    I guess the SSA likes to give out free disability money to people faking a mental illness.

    The SSA doesn’t care about safe guarding tax payers’ money or lives.

    • tony

      People with severe depression, anxiety, pstd, bipolar, etc. shouldn’t be able to drive.

      The SSA definition of disabled is a joke. You got blind people driving cars and boats.

  2. tony

    The disability fraudsters are ready to drive their car to the beach.

    When they are getting Social Security disability for being blind, their driver license should automatically be suspended.

    The DMV definition for disabled for the mentally ill and blind is stricter than the SSA. You claim to be blind and mentally ill and the DMV will take away your driver license.

    The SSA doesn’t take away driver licenses from the fraudsters, but instead gives them free disability money so they can pay for their car payments and auto insurance.

    • tony

      In Maine, any “severe” psychiatric disorder is “no driving”.
      http://www.maine.gov/sos/bmv/licenses/medical.html

    • DrGonzo888

      Anyone “claiming” to be blind or mentally ill … is a sick individual, why would you claim that if you weren’t ?

  3. Marilyn

    I received the same email and forwarded it to an employee in the local Soc. Sec. office. It is fraudulent, and he has sent it on up the line. Best to delete, not sure if it’s infected.

    • Marilyn

      This is in reference to the request for a cell phone number.

    • Judy T.

      It is not fraudulent. I replied to the email and received the following response. I have since complained to my Congressman.

      Thank you for contacting the Social Security Administration.

      On October 17, 2014, President Obama signed an Executive Order on cyber security, which requires Multifactor Authentication for any agency applications that access personal information. Multifactor Authentication is a security process that requires more than one method to verify the user’s identity. An example would be a password (something you know) and a text message to a registered cell phone (something you have).

      Social Security is introducing this multifactor requirement to move proactively forward with securing our electronic services. Prior to July 2016, SSA offered Multifactor Authentication, but only for customers who opted to register for a my Social Security account with extra security. Effective July 30, 2016, each time a customer wants to access his or her account, he or she needs to enter a username and password. Next, a one-time security code will be texted to the registered cell phone number on the account. Once he or she enters the security code and accepts the Terms of Service, the my Social Security home page will display.

      If you do not have a text-enabled cell phone or you do not wish to provide your cell phone number, you will not be able to access your my Social Security account.

      If you need assistance troubleshooting your authentication, we recommend that you speak to one of our representatives to better assist you. Please contact us at our toll free number, 1-800-772-1213. You can speak with a representative from 7a.m. to 7 p.m. on business days.

      Our phone lines are busiest early in the week and early in the month, so if your business can wait, it’s best to call at other times. However, if you’re planning to file for benefits, you should call us as soon as possible. You can help us serve you better by having your Social Security number handy when you call.

      People who are hearing-impaired may call our “TTY” number, 1-800-325-0778, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. on business days.

      Callers from Alaska, Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands may receive different “live” service hours. However, they will continue to have automated services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

      Your inquiry regarding this matter is important to us. We recommend that you speak to one of our representatives to better assist you. Please contact us at our toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213. You can speak with a representative from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on business days.

      Our phone lines are busiest early in the week and early in the month, so if your business can wait, it’s best to call at other times. However, if you’re planning to file for benefits, you should call us as soon as possible. You can help us serve you better by having your Social Security number handy when you call.

      People who are hearing-impaired may call our “TTY” number, 1-800-325-0778, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. on business days.

      Callers from Alaska, Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Maria na Islands, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands may receive different “live” service hours. However, they will continue to have automated services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    • Ray F.

      We did send an email to current my Social Security users informing them about the new security feature. Learn more at https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/MoreInformationAboutMFA.html

  4. Nelda M.

    I retired from the Federal Government in 1998. At the
    time Carter was president. He took away 2/3’s of my
    Social Security because he said that was double dipping. Does Carter get more than 1 government pension? If so, then he is double dipping!

    • Darrell H.

      This is the purpose of “BIG GOVERNMENT”!

    • Patricia S.

      You’d better check your history. That was Ronald Regan who did that.

  5. Gaye W.

    That statement that you must have a cell phone sounds really fishy to me! Not EVERYONE has one.

  6. Gaye W.

    That statement that you must have a cell phone sounds really fishy to me! No EVERYONE has one.

  7. Charlie W.

    As recently as July 7, in an SSA blogpost by Doug Walker, having a code texted to a phone was described as an OPTIONAL EXTRA security feature of a personal my Social Security account, which was a CHOICE available to those with a cell phone. The stated requirements for a personal my Social Security account were listed as “You must be 18 years old, have a valid Social Security number, U.S. mailing address (or a military address if deployed overseas), and an email address.”

    In fact, the links in your blogpost yesterday (July 28) — https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/verifyandprotectid.html#&a0=5
    say this “We offer you the choice to add extra security when you create an online account.” in reference to the text of a code to a cell phone.

    I have had a personal my Social Security account since 2012, and used it many times, both before and after retirement. I do not have a cell phone.

    Yesterday, I received an email which does seem to check out as being from SSA – and that email says that in August I will be required to have a cell phone in order to continue using my personal my Social Security account. In part, it says “If you do not have a text-enabled cell phone or you do not wish to provide your cell phone number, you will not be able to access your my Social Security account.”

    Today, I have looked all over the ssa.gov web site to try to confirm this awful statement, and I have found nothing. There’s a video at https://faq.ssa.gov/link/portal/34011/34019/Article/3700/What-is-a-my-Social-Security-online-account-and-how-do-I-get-one which today currently clearly states that the code texted to a cell phone is an OPTIONAL feature.

    So, is this email a phish? or sent by hackers who penetrated the SSA site? or an error by actual SSA employees? Well, in my opinion it is a gross error even if the email is truly from SSA and does accurately represent your plan to force me and thousands of others with no cell phones to move back to the mid-20th century setup of only being able to privately contact SSA through telephone, snailmail, or personal visits – with NO secure online access to my personal information by me.

    Hoping for answers to my questions.

    • Tammy

      It’s not fraudulent – unfortunately. I found the “roll out” document online. Apparently, regional people haven’t read it yet:

      http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/DownloadDocument?objectID=63235501

      • Ray F.

        We did send an email to current my Social Security users informing them about the new security feature. Learn more at https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/MoreInformationAboutMFA.html

        • Chris

          I do not complain very often having been in the shoes of an SSA employee and know the difficulties so many experience on so many levels. That being said requiring one to have a cell phone is an atrocity. You may have other ways to contact AND you may feel that many adults do have cell phones to text. HOWEVER many seniors do NOT text or really know all of their features of their cell phone. I have an elderly father who is on a brother’s plan for TALKING and letting us know when he has a problem. He has no idea how to message or text and gets confused and agitated at the thought of having to learn it. I also do NOT have a cell phone and it is an extreme inconvenience to tell me I need to call and wait forever either in the office (if one is still open as offices are closing due to encouraging people to use their computers instead). There are many who still do not have a computer, if they do they don’t know a lot about it and some do NOT even have nor can afford the internet. Personal information like accessing Social Security is a security risk when done on a public computer such as the library.

          This is wrong wrong wrong. People can do much on the My SSA site from the safety of their own home. In addition to estimated benefits, they can order 1099’s and get benefit letters for verification of income. These are not time consuming issues by themselves BUT you are going to overload even more the offices and phones? You should NOT implement this until you have other options for those without cell phones. I will be contacting my Congressman as well in regards to this.

          Thank you

          • Scott

            You can previous years 1099 after the tax year is done. What we need is to be able to get the present year 1099 on Jan 31st of that same year. Also the SSA needs to up there letter to the current year each year.

        • James C.

          The website says a security code will be texted to your cell phone within 2 minutes, but I have waited over an hour now for a security code and still haven’t received it. My provider is not Verizon, which is identified on the website as a provider that cannot handle SSA’s texts. This additional level of security is unnecessary and ineffective.

    • Judy T.

      This notice was sent by SSA. I sent a message to them complaining about the unfairness & discrimination of it & they have replied. I have replied to that message & have sent a complaint about this to my Congressman. I encourage everyone who disagrees with the SSA’s new policy to write their Congressman ASAP!!

      • Patricia S.

        I sent an email to both of mine. I agree with the sender who said that this is an atrocity. It is. It is unfair and discriminatory. There are other ways to increase security. Cell phones are NOT secure at ALL. We should have an option to opt in to receiving paper statements as we did in the past. As if anyone believes that any criminal who wants access to social security rolls could NOT invade the system. What a pipe dream that idea is.

    • Ray F.

      Thank you for your question. We did send an email to current my Social Security users informing them about the new security feature. Learn more at https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/MoreInformationAboutMFA.html

      • Patricia S.

        I never received ANY ADVANCE NOTIFICATION. I found out that I could not access my records when I tried to do it. I don’t have a cell phone that can receive text messages.

  8. m l.

    when i try to create myaccount .i get a message stating i cannt be verified .something to that effect.why is this?

    • vjones

      check your credit report with Experian

    • Ray F.

      Hello, if you are having difficulties creating your personal my Social Security account, please call 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. After you hear “Briefly tell me why you are calling,” say “Help Desk” for help with a my Social Security account. Sometimes, it might be best to visit your local Social Security office for further assistance.

  9. Dorothy B.

    I have retire alresdy can i still have an account with you if so tell me how

    • Ray F.

      Yes Dorothy, you can create a my Social Security account and manage your Social Security benefits. You can view, print, and save your benefit verification letter at any time with this account. Click here to begin. We appreciate you doing business with us online.

  10. Mahammedabdalla

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