HomeFactsHow Long Does It Take To Apply For Social Security

How Long Does It Take To Apply For Social Security

Go To The Social Security Office

How Long Does it Take to Receive Social Security Benefits?

Heading to your local Social Security office may be the best option, but its also less possible these days.

I usually recommend someone who isnt technologically efficient to apply in person or over the phone, says Daniel Vredeveld, CFP, financial advisor at Richmond Brothers in Jackson, Michigan. It usually helps to work directly with someone, that way you can avoid making accidental mistakes.

But an in-person appointment may come with drawbacks, for example, if you have physical limitations or are concerned about the spread of COVID.

Why Would My Application Be Rejected Or My Benefits Denied

Some of the most common reasons an application is rejected or benefits are denied are:

  • Insufficient documentation provided
  • The SSA could not locate or contact you
  • You refuse to cooperate and provide the necessary information
  • You commit fraud
  • To reject or deny your application Social Security must have reasonable legal grounds. If your application is rejected you can contact the Social Security office to learn why it was rejected and the steps you can take to reapply.

    How Do I Apply For Social Security At 62 And How Long Will It Take To Start Receiving Payments

    Full question:When I turn 62, how do I start my Social Security benefit? And how long after applying for benefits, will it be direct deposited?


    When you are ready to begin collecting benefits you should always apply 2-3 months prior! Once you apply for benefits, it usually takes the Social Security Administration 4 to 6 weeks to approve your benefits. On your application you will be asked when you want your benefits to start. Since you can only begin collecting the month after the month you turn 62, you would put that month as your start date. Based on the month you input, you will receive your first payment the following month.

    Keep in mind, age 62 is the earliest you can collect, but you would be collecting a reduced benefit. This can also affect spousal and survivor benefits for those who are/were married. You will also be subject to an earnings limit and many other key Social Security rules that can impact your benefits based on your personal situation. It is important to plan for the best claiming strategy for you so that you can optimize your benefits and understand what rules to look out for. Even if you have a plan in mind, speaking with an expert can help take the weight off your shoulders that you did not miss anything and that your completely confident in your claiming decision!

    Take care,

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    Report The Death Of A Social Security Or Medicare Beneficiary

    You must report the death of a family member receiving Social Security or Medicare benefits. The Social Security Administration processes death reports for both. Find out how you can report a death and how to cancel benefit payments. In addition to canceling SSA and Medicare benefits, find out what other benefits and accounts you should cancel.

    When Should I Apply For Social Security When I Turn 66 In 2021

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    If you were born on the first or second day of the month, you meet this requirement in the month of your 62nd birthday. If you were born on any other day of the month, you do not meet this requirement until the following month. You can apply up to four months before you want your retirement benefits to start.

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    Timeline For Receiving Your Ssn Card If You Visited A Social Security Office

    If you did not request an SSN while completing your I-765 or I-485. You should receive your SSN card within two weeks after we have everything we need to process your application, including verification of your immigration document with the USCIS. If we are unable to immediately verify your immigration document with the USCIS, it may take two additional weeks to receive your card.

    Where Do I Apply

    After collecting all required documentation, you can apply for your Social Security Number with the Social Security Administration. The Social Security Administration has a few locations in the Boston area. When applying for your Social Security Number, you will need to go in person to one of the Social Security Administration locations.

    Generally, there are three convenient locations for Northeastern students studying at the Boston campus:

    • Social Security Administration

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    Founded in 1976, Bankrate has a long track record of helping people make smart financial choices. Weve maintained this reputation for over four decades by demystifying the financial decision-making process and giving people confidence in which actions to take next.

    Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that were putting your interests first. All of our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts, who ensure everything we publish is objective, accurate and trustworthy.

    Our reporters and editors focus on the points consumers care about most how to save for retirement, understanding the types of accounts, how to choose investments and more so you can feel confident when planning for your future.

    What Is A Social Security Number

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    The Social Security Number is a nine digit number that is unique to you only and is used for tax-payer identification, income reporting, and other official record keeping purposes.

    A Social Security Number Card is an important identifying document. Please make sure you keep it in a safe place to avoid identity theft. Do not carry your card with you. Keep it in a safe place with your other important papers!

    To learn more about what a Social Security Number is please visit the Social Security website.

    Remember: Social Security Numbers are not valid forms of work authorization! Please read the employment section to learn about student and exchange visitor work authorization on and off campus.

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    What’s Full Retirement Age

    Full retirement age is when you’re eligible to receive full Social Security benefits. Your full retirement age depends on your birth year: For anyone born in 1960 or later, full retirement age is 67. For those born in 1955 through to the end of 1959 , full retirement age ranges between 66 and 2 months and 66 and 10 months. If you were born before 1955, you’ve already reached age 66 and full retirement age.

    When Benefits Will Begin

    If your application is approved before you reach at least the minimum retirement age for people born in the same year as you, you will typically begin receiving your Social Security retirement benefits one month after you are entitled to receive them. For instance, if you are eligible to receive benefits beginning in February, you will receive your first payment in March.

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    What If I Change My Mind

    If you receive Social Security benefits at a reduced rate but then change your mind, you have the option of withdrawing your application within the first 12 months of receiving benefits and paying back to the government what you’ve already received . Then, you could restart benefits at a later date to take advantage of a higher payout. Be aware that you’re limited to one withdrawal per lifetime.

    For example, let’s say you elected to receive early benefits at age 62 but then decided to go back to work at age 63. You could withdraw your Social Security application, pay back the years’ worth of benefits you received, go back to work, and then wait until your full retirement age to restart your benefit checks at a higher level.

    Once you reach full retirement age, another option is to voluntarily stop benefits at any point before age 70 to receive delayed retirement credits . Benefits will automatically restart at age 70 at a higher amountâunless you choose to start taking benefits before then. Note that when you withdraw your application or stop your benefits after full retirement age, you must specify if your Medicare coverageâif you have itâshould be included in the withdrawal.

    Can I Apply Online By Phone Or In Person

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    You can apply online here, by phone at 1-800-772-1213 which is a nationwide toll-free service, or by visiting a Social Security office near you.

    You can find a location close to you by searching your zip code in this locator.

    Make sure to call ahead of time and book an appointment. You may not receive service if you show up to the Social Security office without an appointment.

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    How Do You Apply For Benefits

    When you are ready to apply for Social Security benefits, you can apply in a number of ways. For individuals living in the United States, applications can be taken over the phone, online or by visiting a local Social Security office.

    Individuals who do not reside within the United States or any of its territories must contact the nearest U.S. Social Security office, Embassy or consulate.

    How To Stop Social Security Check Payments

    The SSA can not pay benefits for the month of a recipients death. That means if the person died in July, the check received in August must be returned. Find out how to return a check to the SSA.

    If the payment is by direct deposit, notify the financial institution as soon as possible so it can return any payments received after death. For more about the requirement to return benefits for the month of a beneficiarys death, see the top of page 11 of this SSA publication.

    Family members may be eligible for Social Security survivors benefits when a person getting benefits dies. Visit the SSA’s Survivors Benefits page to learn more.

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    What Documents Do You Need

    It will be helpful to have the following documents on hand when applying:

    • Social Security card

    • W-2 or self-employment tax return

    • Military discharge papers

    • Childrens birth certificates and Social Security numbers if youre applying for childrens benefits

    You might also want to have your bank account number as well if you wish to set up direct deposit to receive your benefit payments. Social Security payments can only be sent electronically. If you dont have a bank account, you can choose to receive your benefit payments on a prepaid debit card.

    How Long Does It Take To Apply For Social Security

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    The online application process takes about 30 minutes. After you apply, you will be contacted if more information is needed. You will be informed if you can receive benefits through someone else, like your spouse, and if other family members can receive benefits through you.

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    Other Reactions From Online Applications

    Furthermore, you will not be allowed to apply online if you got your identification card or drivers license from a U.S. territory. These include Guam, American Samoa, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands or the Northern Mariana Islands.

    As long as you are not requesting a change of your name to your card, and if you are 18 with a U.S. mailing address and have an I.D. card or drivers license issued from one of the many states or the District of Columbia, you can apply online.

    Is It Better To Collect Social Security At 66 Or 70

    As you undoubtedly already are well aware, most financial planners recommend thatso long as you can afford to do soyou should wait until age 70 to begin receiving your Social Security benefits. Your monthly payment in such an event will be 32% higher than if you begin receiving benefits at age 66.

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    How Can I Increase My Retirement Benefits

    There are multiple ways you can increase your retirement benefits. This article mentioned a few ways briefly. Below is a list of other ways you could increase your benefits payment.

    Social Security benefits can be increased by:

  • Delaying your retirement
  • Apply for a survivors benefit
  • Avoid Social Security tax by staying under the taxable combined income rate
  • What About Taxes On Social Security

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    Social Security benefits may be taxable, depending on your “combined income.” Your combined income is equal to your adjusted gross income , plus non-taxable interest payments , plus half of your Social Security benefit.

    As your combined income increases above a certain threshold , more of your benefit is subject to income taxâup to a maximum of 85%. For help, talk with a CPA or tax professional.

    In any case, if you’re still working, you may want to postpone Social Security either until you reach your full retirement age or until your earned income is less than the annual limit. In no situation should you postpone benefits past age 70.

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    How To Apply For Social Security Retirement Benefits

    Do you plan to use Social Security Benefits soon?

    Are you a young person just starting to work?

    Either way, understanding Social Security benefits, how they are calculated, and how you can get the most out of them will help you to plan for your future.

    This article will cover who qualifies for Social Security Benefits, the application process, and how your benefits are calculated.

    It will also touch on factors to keep in mind throughout your career and when deciding the age you should apply for Social Security Benefits.

    What If I Am Still Working

    You can continue to work while claiming Social Security Benefits. Doing so may increase your benefits because your 35 highest-earning years are included in the calculation of your benefits.

    So if you continue working, and you earn a higher wage in the year before, your benefits will be recalculated and most likely increased.

    If you are under full retirement age and claim your Social Security Benefits, earning a higher yearly wage may reduce your benefits.

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    Determination Of Benefit Options

    In looking over your application, the SSA determines if you can get higher benefits off your spouses record or your spouse can get benefits off of yours. The agency might also determine if your children qualify for benefits on your record. If any other family members get benefits off of your record, it wont affect your retirement payments.

    Hope For Those Waiting To Get Disability

    Why does it take so long to get Social Security Disability benefits?

    There is some good news. If you have a severe disabling condition, your wait may not be as long as you think. The Social Security Administration has been working hard to speed up application times for those who suffer from the most severe disabling conditions.

    This fast track process allows some Social Security applicants to be awarded an approval in a matter of days, rather than a matter of months or even years.

    It has been estimated that this year 100,000 to 125,000 of the people who suffer from the most severe disabilities will be approved for Social Security Disability within ten days of their application.

    This fast track program is intended to help the Social Security applicants who need help the most, but the trickle effect this program causes may end up with reduced backlogs for other Social Security Disability applicants.

    Remember, when applying for Social Security Disability, patience is a virtue. Your application will not be approved overnight. Just make sure you do everything you can to speed the process along. Provide any and all required documents quickly and try to expedite matters when you can.

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    What If I Am Divorced

    You may still receive a spouses benefits if you divorced as long as:

    • You were legally married for at least 10 years
    • Your ex-spouse has remained unmarried
    • Your ex-spouse is older than 62
    • Your ex-spouses benefit based on their employment would be lower than the benefit you would receive based on your employment.

    Read more about getting ex-spousal Social Security benefits here.

    How Do I Apply In Person

    To apply in person, you first need to call your local Social Security office and set up an appointment. Find your closest Social Security office by searching your zip code here.

    Please keep in mind, due to Covid-19, face-to-face service may be suspended. Confirm Social Security offices are accepting in-person appointments.

    Once you have an appointment, prepare all the required documents. I would suggest going above and beyond to avoid having to make multiple trips.

    During the appointment, you and the Social Security officer will go through the application process, discuss the questions, and look at the documents you provide.

    If you have any questions and concerns, make sure to write them down prior to the appointment and ask the officer while you speak with them.

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    Replacements Arent Always Needed

    Also, you should be aware of the fact that its not always that you need a card replacement. If you know your number, that may be enough for you in some cases. However, if you find yourself in a situation where a card is necessary, then you need a replacement, and applying online is very easy.

    If you are one of the people who cannot apply online, you should go to a Social Security office instead. If you visit socialsecurity.gov, you can find the available locations. Luckily, there are over 1,300 offices for this purpose. If the office is too far away from you, its also possible to download the application and mail it. However, this is a little risky, because it is possible to get your identity stolen.

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