Although every citizen of the United States has a Social Security account, not everyone knows how to access it or why access would benefit them. The Social Security Agency (SSA) website provides you a wealth of information. No matter your age, you should register online to access your SSA account to make sure your records are accurate and to begin planning for the future.
Check and Confirm Your Earning Records
Your social security benefits are based on your highest 35-year earnings history. At least annually, you should visit the site to confirm that your earnings history is correct. The site also provides information on how to rectify the records if there is a discrepancy.
View Benefit Estimates for Planning Purposes
The website provides a view of what your estimated benefits will be based on various points of time. These estimates can be useful in your retirement planning process. Depending on your age, this number can change each year based on your earnings history, so this calculation may only be useful for those approaching or past the first eligible early retirement age of 62.
Keep in mind, up to 85% of your Social Security benefits may be taxable for Federal purposes. Most states do not tax social security benefits, but there are 13 states that do tax such income.
Access Additional Insights
In addition to retirement information, the SSA site can also provide you information on:
• Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
• Impact of the death of a spouse on your and/or your minor children’s benefits
• Situations when a divorced spouse can claim benefits based on their ex-spouses earnings record
It is never too early to begin planning for retirement, and keeping an eye on your Social Security account will help you make informed decisions for your future. Preparing for the future can feel like a daunting task, but you do not have to do it alone. Contact a Hantzmon Wiebel team member today to gain a fuller understanding of the tax implications of each potential path.
Disclaimer of Liability
Our firm provides the information in this article for general guidance only, and does not constitute the provision of legal advice, tax advice, accounting services, investment advice or professional consulting of any kind. The information provided herein should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional tax, accounting, legal or other competent advisors. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should consult a professional advisor who has been provided with all pertinent facts relevant to your particular situation. Tax articles in this blog are not intended to be used, and cannot be used by any taxpayer, for the purpose of avoiding accuracy-related penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer. The information is provided “as is,” with no assurance or guarantee of completeness, accuracy or timeliness of the information, and without warranty of any kind, express or implied, including but not limited to warranties of performance, merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose.