Social Security Column: Save Some Time Over the Holidays - Online

Social Security Column
Save Some Time Over the Holidays - Online
by Jeanette Watkins
Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Baltimore MD

Many people have found a new way to deal with the many chores of the holiday season - by going online. Some shoppers have eliminated the need to go to crowded shopping malls for gifts by taking care of it all online. Other people pay their bills right over the Internet to save the time of writing checks or withdrawing cash for all of the season's purchases.
You'll find convenient, secure transactions can also be found in places you may not ordinarily think to look - for example, at Social Security!
You can apply for benefits, obtain information, plan for retirement, and request a replacement Medicare card, even apply for extra help with your prescription drug costs all at www.socialsecurity.gov.
According to a recent survey, Social Security's online retirement benefit application once again ranked at the top of all Federal government websites in customer satisfaction. Our "Application for Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Costs" finished second, with several other Social Security website services making the top 10 of the survey.
Much of your Social Security business can be handled quickly and securely from your own home or office computer. If you just visit our website at www.socialsecurity.gov you will find that you can -
* file for retirement, disability and spouse's benefits;
* check the status of your benefit application;
* change your address and/or phone number, if you receive monthly benefits;
* sign-up for direct deposit of Social Security benefits;
* use agency benefit planners to help you better understand your Social Security protection as you plan for your financial future...and then use convenient benefit calculators to figure your monthly benefit amounts;
* find the Social Security office closest to your home; and
* request a replacement Medicare card.
Looking for more Social Security information? You can go online to find out almost anything you need to know about the Social Security program. Information is available on subjects ranging from how to get a Social Security number for a newborn to how to go back to work while receiving disability benefits.
This holiday, have more time to visit with friends and family. Take care of any Social Security business you may have at www.socialsecurity.gov.