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Social Security News

Social Security Enters New World of Smartphones and Social Media for Senior Audience

Q&A column also suggests your lowered benefit from early retirement may get a future boost

May 13, 2013 – There is a new incentive to move senior citizens into the age of smartphones: Social Security has a new version of its website designed for mobile devices and is in the social swirl, according to Oscar Garcia, Public Affairs Specialist with SSA in this week’s Q&A. And, there is more good news: when you take early retirement in Social Security your benefit may still get a boost in future years.

Question:

I was at my mother’s house this week, and she asked me a question about Medicare. I checked the Social Security website by using my phone, and I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to get our answer. How long has this cell-phone version of the website been available? 

Answer:

The new mobile optimized website just started this week. Carolyn W. Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, announced that the new website is aimed at smartphone users.

Each year, more than 35 million Social Security web page views come via smartphones. People visiting the agency’s website, www.socialsecurity.gov, via smartphone (Android, Blackberry, iPhone, and Windows devices) will be redirected to the agency’s new mobile-friendly site.

 

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How Does Social Security Determine Your Benefits? Q&A Answers This and More

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April 25, 2013


Read more Social Security News

also check Medicare and Senior Politics

 

Once there, visitors can access a mobile version of Social Security’s Frequently Asked Questions, an interactive Social Security number (SSN) decision tree to help people identify documents needed for a new/replacement SSN card, and mobile publications which they can listen to in both English and Spanish right on their phone.

“We are committed to meeting the changing needs of the American people and the launch of our new mobile site helps reinforce our online presence and adaptability to advances in technology,” Acting Commissioner Colvin said.

There's Not An App for That!

The only smartphone apps from the Social Security Administration showing up in iTunes are designed to help businesses make their Social Security deductions.

There are several helpful apps to help seniors with Social Security issues but they are from private sources.

In addition, visitors to the new mobile site can learn how to create a personal “my Social Security” account to get an online Social Security Statement, learn more about Social Security’s online services, and connect with Social Security on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest.

For people unable to complete their Social Security business online or over the telephone, the agency also unveiled a new mobile field office locator. The new mobile office locator has the capability to provide turn-by-turn directions to the nearest Social Security office based on information entered by the person.

Social Security continues to leverage technology and find more innovative ways to meet the evolving needs of the American public without compromising service. For more information, go to www.socialsecurity.gov.


Question:

If I take early retirement and still work, will my benefits continue to be reduced because I retired at age 62?

Answer:

Yes, there will still be a reduction based on starting your benefits early, but the reduction factor can be lowered in some cases. Social Security will review the age 62 reduction factor when a person reaches full retirement age.  At that time, we will determine if there is any month a benefit was not paid because of earnings that exceeded the annual earnings test amount.  We remove those month(s) from the reduction factor calculation.  Then, we pay the higher benefit for the month the person attained full retirement age and for all subsequent months.


Oscar Garcia is a Public Affairs Specialist with the Social Security Administration. You can direct your questions to him at: SSA, 411 Richland Hills Drive, San Antonio, Texas, 78245. You can also email him at Oscar.h.garcia@ssa.gov.

 

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