How to Read Your Social Security Statement


October 26, 2022

2:38 min

Older couple sitting with computer and social security papers

Reading your Social Security Statement can be overwhelming. Learn tips on how to read your statement to ensure you’re receiving correct earnings.

Your Social Security Statement shows how much you paid in Social Security and Medicare taxes. Your statement explains how much you would get in Social Security benefits when you reach your full retirement age. Looking at your Social Security Statement can be overwhelming, here are some tips on how to read your statement.

You can access your Social Security Statement online by using your personal my Social Security account. Your Social Security account gives you personalized tools, whether you receive benefits or not. You can use your account to request a replacement Social Security card, check the status of an application, estimate future benefits, or manage the benefits you already receive.

There are many pages within your Social Security Statement, so let’s start with the first. The first page offers an overview of the information you’ll find included within your statement. You’ll also find links for other tools you can use to estimate or apply for benefits.

The second and third pages of your statement will break down your estimated benefits for retirement, disability, your family and survivors, and Medicare.

  • Retirement: To get retirement benefits, you need 40 credits of work. The Social Security credits you earn move with you from job to job throughout your career.
  • Disability: Social Security may help you if you become disabled, even at a young age.
  • Family: If you get retirement or disability benefits, your spouse and children also may qualify for benefits.
  • Survivors: Upon your passing, your family may be eligible to receive survivors benefits.
  • Medicare: Medicare helps pay for inpatient hospital care, nursing care, doctors’ fees, drugs, and other medical services and supplies to people age 65 and older, as well as people who have been receiving Social Security disability benefits for two years or more.

The third page of your Social Security Statement also includes your earnings record. This shows you each year that you have worked, your taxed Social Security earnings for each year, and your taxed Medicare earnings for each year. It’s important to review your earnings record carefully to make sure you’re getting appropriate credit for the money you’ve earned from working or self-employment.

The remaining pages of your statement offer a broad overview of Social Security, along with tips for planning your retirement. Use your Social Security Statement as a tool for planning your financial future.

It’s important to review your earnings record carefully to make sure you’re getting appropriate credit for the money you’ve earned from working or self-employment. If you notice errors on your statement, the first step is to find proof of your missing earnings, such as a W-2 form, tax return, or wage records. After gathering your documents, contact Social Security by calling 1-800-772-1213 to correct your earnings record. Be sure to check with your financial advisor and they can assist you. Regularly visiting with your advisor helps ensure your documents are kept up to date.

Central Investment Advisors is not affiliated with or endorsed by the U.S. Social Security Administration or any government agency. For questions about your Social Security benefits, please contact your local Social Security Office. The Social Security Administration provides free Social Security forms, publications and assistance.

Category: Retirement

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