New here? You may want updates via email or RSS feed. Thanks for visiting!
Last week, I drove out to the box factory to see my brother Jeff and my cousin Nick. Ostensibly, I made the trip to check up on Mom’s financial situation. Really, though, it was an excuse to spend three hours chatting about nothing and everything all at once.
As I was looking through Mom’s Social Security info, I decided to check my own account online.
“Look,” I said. “I’ll get $1125 per month if I start Social Security in thirteen years. If I wait eighteen years, I’ll get $1598 per month. That’s as if I had another half-million dollars saved for retirement.” [I based this very rough estimate on the math for the four-percent rule.]
“Wait,” Nick said. “You can check your Social Security benefits online?” He was less interested in my hypothetical half-million dollars in added wealth than he was in looking at his Social Security account.
“Yes,” I said. “Of course. Generally speaking, the U.S. government websites are awesome.” It’s true. They are. Our government may get a lot of crap for the things it does wrong, but government websites are universally useful and informative.
“But is that safe?” Nick asked.
“Yes, it’s safe,” I said. “It’s the official Social Security site with official Social Security information. The government isn’t trying to scam you.”
“I didn’t know you could do this either,” Jeff said.
“Huh,” I said. “Maybe I should share this at Get Rich Slowly. If you guys don’t know about this, there are probably tons of other people who haven’t heard about it.”
How to Check Your Social Security Statement Online
It’s easy to check your Social Security statement online. Everything works exactly as you’d expect and the website security is tight. Here’s how.
- Head to the official Social Security website. (Make sure you’re at ssa.gov and that the start of the URL includes “https” indicating that it’s a secure connection.)
- Create an account. Follow the instructions carefully. When you receive your activation code, return to the Social Security website to complete the process.
- After you’ve created your account, log in. Even here, you’ll encounter an additional security measure. After you submit your password, the website will email you a one-time security code. After you enter that, you’ll be able to access your information. (You’ll get a new security code each time you access the account.)
From the main page of your account, you have access to all of your basic Social Security info, such as your earning record:
And your estimated benefits:
You can also download your most recent Social Security statement and/or order a replacement card. (True story: My Social Security card was stolen from the glovebox of my Datsun 310 GX in 1988, when I was a sophomore in college. I’ve never replaced it.)
There’s not a lot to see in your Social Security account, but that’s fine. Sometimes you simply need to check your estimated benefits or your lifetime earnings. The Social Security website makes that easy and efficient to do.
You might think there would be some easy, online search engine for you to track an application for a Social Security number. (SSN) But you’ll have to call or return in person to the office where you originally applied.
In this day and age when you can get detailed tracking online about when your new books or clothes will land on your doorstep, you might think there would be an easy way to find out what’s up with your application for a Social Security number.
It’s vital to have a Social Security number to work or even stay for extended periods in the United States. And while it’s not hard for U.S. citizens to obtain an SSN for their newborn baby, the application process is more difficult for adults. Any applicant over the age of 12 must appear in person at an office to apply, with appropriate documentation and evidence.
The Social Security Administration says that it will mail your SSN and card as soon as it has verified the documents you presented with your application. If the wait seems longer than expected, you may want to check on the status of the application.
The Social Security Administration allows you to do many tasks online, from requesting a replacement card to applying for benefits. And they’ve recently put together a new “My Social Security Account” website where you can find all your benefits and accomplish many Social Security related tasks. But checking on the status of an application for an SSN isn’t among them. In short, if you want to know how to track an SSN application status online, the short answer is: you cannot do so.
Check SSN Status
In order to check the status of your application for a Social Security Number, call or return to the office where you made your application. If you applied by mail, call the office to which you mailed the application.
If you go in person, be sure to bring photo identification with you. Bring a copy of the application, too, if you have it.
With the time it takes to prepare your application, the possibility of appeals and hearings, and the processing time the Social Security Administration (SSA) requires to sort out applications, you might have to wait several months before you receive your first disability benefits. If you’re frustrated with the delay or haven’t received a decision from the SSA, you will need to begin periodically checking your Social Security disability status. That way, you’ll know where your application is within the process, why it might be delayed, and what you can do to speed up the processing time. Although you can check the status yourself using your phone or computer, for best results we recommend another method…
Checking Your Social Security Disability Status
USING A DISABILITY REPRESENTATIVE
If you choose to hire a disability representative, you won’t have to worry about checking your Social Security disability status. Not only will your representative help you prepare your application, obtain medical statements, and answer all of your questions, but they will also monitor your case status. They know who to contact and how. Communicating with all related government agencies on your behalf and working hard to speed up your waiting time, your representative will make the process easy and transparent. This is the best way to ensure your application is well-prepared and ultimately approved.
Checking your Social Security disability status personally can be done in three ways: online, by phone, or in person. However, we do not recommend checking your application status in person. You would need to make an appointment and drive to your local SSA office just to hear the status of your claim. The other two methods are far more convenient.
CHECKING YOUR STATUS ONLINE
To check your status online, visit the Application Status Information webpage of the Social Security Administration website. All you need is your 9-digit Social Security number and the confirmation number you received when you submitted your application. If you have very recently filed for disability benefits, wait at least five days from the date your filed the application before you attempt to use the online service. Also, you will need to sit tight for the one minute it takes the program to receive, process, and send back the information you request.
MY SOCIAL SECURITY
You can also set up a My Social Security Account online at the following link http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount. This website will allow you to check the status of your claim, the amount of your benefits if you are found eligible, and the amount your minor children would qualify for. Your My Social Security Account will also allow you to check your insured status and the date you have to be found disabled before to draw Social Security Disability benefits as opposed to the needs based SSI program.
CHECKING YOUR STATUS BY PHONE
If you want to check your status by telephone, you have four options:
- You can call Social Security using their toll-free number: 1-800-772-1213 (or TTY 1-800-325-0778). The office is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- You can call your local SSA office and ask the representative to check your claim status.
- You can call the disability examiner evaluating your claim. To find the phone number for your state Disability Determination Services agency (DDS), contact your local Social Security office. This method is only useful if you have just filed an initial application or it is your first appeal.
- You can call the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR). However, this is only useful if you have submitted a request for a hearing before an administrative law judge. You can find phone numbers for regional ODAR offices on this website.
If you are interested in hiring a disability representative to aid you in the processing of preparing an application and checking your Social Security disability status, check out BTS Group, Inc. Our knowledgeable, caring professionals would be happy to help you prepare, manage, and win your case. Give us a call today at 1-866-441-4BTS (4287).