We Want to Provide You with Timely, High Quality, and Accurate Service

November 22, 2022 • By

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Last Updated: November 22, 2022

Social Security Administration LogoSocial Security Administration (SSA) employees demonstrate an unwavering commitment to serving the millions of people like you who turn to us for help each year. However, we cannot keep up with the demand for service and our annual fixed cost increases like salaries, rent, and guard services. The bottom line is that we need more funding to deliver the services you expect and deserve, whether it’s requesting a new Social Security card, applying for benefits, or the many other services we provide.

The Biden-Harris Administration asked Congress for a funding anomaly of $800 million higher than our fiscal year (FY) 2022 budget, as we started FY 2023 in October without a full year budget. The additional funding would have allowed us to maintain level service by hiring employees, funding our fixed cost increases, funding information technology (IT) projects, and allocating enough overtime to handle workloads, provided there is not an unexpected and significant increase in demand for our services and programs.

Congress provided us with $400 million, which provides enough funding to cover our fixed cost increases only through December, overtime at FY 2022 levels, and continuous hiring at the start of FY 2023. However, it is not enough to cover the full year fixed cost increases or to maintain the hiring and overtime levels beyond December to improve service. On the other hand, the FY 2023 President’s budget request of $14.8 billion for SSA – a $1.4 billion increase over our FY 2022 enacted level of funding – would allow us to improve customer service and offer the service experience you deserve.

We have faced years of underfunding. We are currently operating with approximately 4,000 fewer employees since prior to the pandemic – a 7% drop, since we have not had the funds to hire the level of staff needed. We are also experiencing historically high levels of employees leaving the agency, because employees are carrying unreasonable workloads given the staffing shortage. As we lose employees, our service further deteriorates. You feel the effects of our staffing shortage. You are waiting an unacceptable average of over six months for a decision on an initial disability claim and over 30 minutes to speak to a representative on our National 800 Number.

Our employees strive to provide you compassionate and timely service but cannot do so without a budget that allows for significant improvement. Without additional funding in FY 2023, we would be forced to freeze hiring, cut overtime, and cut funding for our IT investments.

It is critical that we have the resources to restore staffing losses and continue our important IT investments or face years of deteriorating services that you will not and should not accept. We must be able to provide timely and quality service to everyone who depends on us.

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  1. Karen F.

    I have reached full retirement age. My husband has elected to not receive benefits until age 70, 2 yrs from now. If I apply now for my benefits, will I be eligible for 50% of his delayed benefits 2 yrs from now? If I do not collect benefits now and waited, would I ever be eligible for 50% of his delayed benefit?

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Karen. Thanks for your questions. First, if a person begins to receive benefits at age 62 or prior to their full retirement age, their benefits are reduced. The reduction factors are permanently applied to all of the benefits for which the person may qualify. Second, to qualify for spouse’s benefits, your spouse must be receiving retirement or disability benefits. Keep in mind that if you qualify for your own benefits and for benefits as a spouse, we always pay your own benefits first. If your benefits as a spouse are higher than your own benefits, you will get a combination of benefits equaling the higher spouse benefit. For more information, please visit our Benefits Planner. We hope this helps. 

  2. Jeneen M.

    I am disabled and was evicted on retaliation and the landlord son stoled all of my property and I can’t do anything about it because I can’t afford a attorney. I’m homeless and can not find a place to live. Either rent is to high or no dogs allowed or simply just no rentals just forever waiting list. I have physical disabilities and chronic health problems and now rheumatoid arthritis extremely bad and Glacoma. My exhusband passed away along with 9 other family members so I have no family only my daughter whom is mentally disabled. People tell me I should be getting ssdi and ssi and survivors benefits. What I get is $1257.00 a month and I have to be homeless and let people walk all over me because I can’t afford to live. I have tryed every resource and program around for section 8 and or home ownership voucher and I have not gotten one penny of assistance or one bite of bread from any program or resource and my blower motor went out in my car no help to fix it and not even a motel voucher to stay in a motel or get warm clothing. These programs in wisconsin really really let me down and caused me to not believe in wisconsin for a being a very state of caring about a humans well being.

  3. Caryl

    My experience has been, whether mail, personal visit, dozens of phone calls, the SSA representative repeats what I just said, writes it up, and puts it in a To Do pile. Nobody acts.
    Yes, there are many seeking service, but office methods are so antiquated at SSA, everything wastes time. Input using a phone keypad would save time, address hasn’t changed, save time on each call just in that way. No one acts on the problem.
    Provide incentives for employees who solve issues. Streamline procedures. IRS pays interest even if taxpayer error, even if it means return because you failed to sign. Why not, IRS had use of the money. SSA should pay interest for these delays. Horse and buggy approach. Voice intro on phone says SSA services 50M. This website says 70M.

  4. Barbara A.

    My questions are about the Stimulus Money . I’m disabled I receive SSDI and SSI benefits. I receive my payments through my Direct Express Card . I have not received any kind of help, assistance or stimulus ? Why ? I don’t get enough so I don’t pay taxes. I don’t receive enough to support myself or pay rent or utilities and definitely not enough to support my two children. I was waiting on that money to try and get myself out of the hole . So my questions are can I receive the money owed to me? How long will it take? My children and I are being kicked out of the house I rent. I have no money no place to take my children and I need the Assistance. I need HELP IMMEDIATELY!

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Barbara. We are sorry to hear about your situation. Please visit the IRS website for all your Economic Income Payment-related questions. If you are unable to find the answer, call the IRS hotline at 1-800-919-9835. 

      You may be eligible to receive social services from the state in which you live. These services include free meals, housekeeping help, transportation, or help with other problems. To get information about services in your area and find out if you qualify, you will need to contact your state or local social services or welfare office. We hope this helps.

  5. George H.

    I have waited for over a month for a response to my question about receiving my form SSA-7162-OCR. I sent an email to Mexico City and also directly to SSA. I have heard nothing from either email. SSA tells me if they don’t receive it by the 24 of December they will stop my payments. This is wrong on their part. If they don’t have the manpower to answer, why do they have the manpower to stop payments? I sent it to them in November and that is all I can do. They don’t answer phones or emails.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, George. We are sorry to hear about your experience. You can submit feedback by visiting our Contact Social Security page. Once there, select the “Email Us” link. This will take you to the “Email A Question to our Support Team” form where you can complete and submit a compliment, complaint, or suggestion. We have also referred your concerns to our Operations Staff. We hope this is resolved soon. 

  6. Rebecca H.

    I had two life changing events in 2022 – I retired after working for 40+ years, and my husband passed away in September. I’ve been paying a large amount for my Medicare Part B IRMAA and desperately need it to be adjusted. I have filed the application and supplied the required documentation (death certificate and a letter verifying my retirement from my employer). First I went in person to my local branch, met with a representative who made copies of my documentation and stamped them as being submitted. I subsequently received another appeal application and immediately completed and mailed it in the furnished envelope. When I called the local office weeks later to ask about my status, I was directed to submit another appeal application online with the related supporting documentation attached.

    Today I received a letter from the local office stating that they received notice that I am requesting a change to my IRMAA premium amount, and they enclosed yet another appeal application with direction that I need to fill it out and supply my husband’s death certificate. How is it possible that there is no record of ANY of my three previous applications with the required documentation? I’m stuck in a never ending loop.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Rebecca. We are sorry to hear about your experience. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We encourage you to continue to working with your local Social Security office. You can ask to speak to a supervisor on your next call or visit. You can also submit feedback by visiting our Contact Social Security page. Once there, select the “Email Us” link. This will take you to the “Email A Question to our Support Team” form where you can complete and submit a compliment, complaint, or suggestion. We hope this is resolved soon. 

  7. Joe Z.

    I applied electronically for SS benefits on October 17, 2022 requesting that my benefits begin on January 1st of 2023. This is a 10 week lead time for a process that your web site claims to take 2-4 weeks. Now I read that I should have applied 4 months in advance! While I understand that processing delays can occur, don’t post a processing time of 2-4 weeks when up to 4 month can be the norm. You can at minimum, update the Social Security web site so that a retiree can make intelligent decisions, unlike the government, that we as tax payers fund.

  8. Kathy J.

    Can’t get help at the local office and when I call to try and get my Part B coverage corrected, I get rude employees on the 1-800 number. I’m sorry offices are understaffed, but this is still no excuse for shoddy service.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Kathy. Thanks for visiting our blog. We are sorry to hear about your experience. You can submit feedback by visiting our Contact Social Security page. Once there, select the “Email Us” link. This will take you to the “Email A Question to our Support Team” form where you can complete and submit a compliment, complaint, or suggestion. We hope this helps.

  9. Ruth T.

    Will I get the COLA if new to SS this year? My application was just approved for Social Security starting 1/18/2letter of approval with the amount but it doesn’t appear to have the COLA increase for the 2023 year.

    Thank You

    • SSA l.

      Yes, everyone will 8.7 percent regardless of which benefit you receive

  10. Jeffrey M.

    I may not be liked very much, for posting a positive message, however, this is my truth, and it always has been my truth regarding the Social Security Administration’s, handling of my claim since 2010. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ A Star of EXCELLENCE FOR EACH YEAR. Yes there have been some long hold’s, but considering all they do, I am Grateful for everyone of them. Happy Holidays….

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