Social Security tip: Questions and answers


Published: Thursday, April 18, 2013 at 9:51 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, April 18, 2013 at 9:51 p.m.

Q: I usually get my benefit payment on the third of the month. But what if the third falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday? Will my payment be late?

A: Just the opposite. Your payment should arrive early. For example, if you usually get your payment on the third of a month, but it falls on a Saturday, we will make payments on Friday.

If you do ever miss a payment, be sure to wait three days before calling to report it missing.

Q: I’m trying to decide when to retire. Can Social Security help?

A: The best place to start is with a visit to the online Social Security statement. The statement provides you with estimates of benefits for you and your family as well as your earnings record and information you should consider about retirement and retirement planning.

Find out more about the statement — and get yours — at www.socialsecurity.gov/mystatement.

The “right” time to retire is different for everyone and depends on your individual situation.

To help you make your own decision, we offer an online fact sheet with some of the factors to consider at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10147.html.

Q: I need to apply for disability benefits. Where do I start?

A: Begin by looking at the Disability Starter Kit. You can find it online at www.socialsecurity.gov/disability/disability_starter_kits.htm or you can request a copy by calling 800-772-1213 (TTY 800-325-0778).

The Disability Starter Kit will help you prepare for your application and interview. When you are ready, you can apply online at www.socialsecurity.gov/applyfordisability or make an appointment to apply in person at a local Social Security office.

And remember: The online disability application is convenient and secure. Don’t stand in line, go online to www.socialsecurity.gov.

Q: My only income is Supplemental Security Income (SSI). My sister recently died and left me a little money. Will this extra money affect my SSI benefits?

A: It depends on the amount. You must report the inheritance to Social Security by calling 800-772-1213 (TTY 800-325-0778).

SSI is a needs-based program for people 65 or older, blind, or disabled who have limited income and resources. We consider your inheritance as income for the month you received it. Accordingly, we may have to adjust your benefit for that month.

If you keep the money into the next month, the money then becomes a part of your resources. A person with more than $2,000 or a couple with more than $3,000 in total resources cannot receive SSI, although there are exceptions.

For more information, visit www.socialsecurity.gov.

Kay Louder is the district manager of the Social Security office in Gainesville.

Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.

▲ Return to Top