Financial Planning Tip: Get Your Social Security Statements Online

While financial planning advice can include help with investments and finding ways to make your money grow, it also means getting reminders so you can keep up with simple money management tasks that you may overlook.  You may think that you spend a lot of time focusing on your money, but it is possible that you only focus on certain aspects of your finances; a Fee-Only financial planner examines the entire picture to keep you on the right financial track.

Now that the Social Security Administration no longer mails paper copies to everyone, I recommend you set up your "My Social Security" account at www.ssa.gov. Certain people (such as workers who are at least 60 and who have yet to start receiving benefits) will receive statements, in the mail but whether you fit into that category or not, you can have this important information right at your fingertips.

Although it is good to seek the expert advice of a Fee-Only financial planner, it also makes sense to be informed about your finances. You can just wait until you start to receive benefits to find out what you will get, but knowing ahead of time can empower you to make better financial choices. For example, while most people qualify for Medicare, there are some who do not, and it would be good to know that before you reach retirement age.

It is also possible that the government does not have a record of all of your working years. If that were the case, you would want to have that error corrected sooner rather than later. However, you can only do this if you are aware.

When you visit www.ssa.gov and verify your identity, you can open a “My Social Security” account to keep track of the benefits you or your beneficiaries will receive.

About the author

Claire Emory, MBA, CFA, CFP®

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