paper statements
January 25, 2017 | by Chris Stein, CFP®, Finance Instructor at Colorado State University
Paper Statements Going Away… Again

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Back in 2011 the Social Security Administration suspended the mailing of paper statements to most people and started giving people online access through http://www.ssa.gov/myaccount in 2012.  Then in 2014 they decided to start mailing statements again to everyone who had NOT registered online and were between the ages of 25 and 60, but only every 5 years (at age 25, 30, 35, etc).  The SSA still would like to encourage people to use the online portal as it contains even more information than the paper statements, allows you to file for most benefits, and keeps costs down for the agency by avoiding all the postage and printing costs.

Not Mailed to Those Under 60

Another change was just announced about these paper statements.  The policy of not mailing to those who have registered on the online portal continues, but in another cost savings measure they have again stopped mailing statements to those under the age of 60.  This will bring down the cost of printing and mailing by $11.3 million in fiscal year 2017.

Become Educated About Your Filing Choices

Related to this cost cutting measure they have essentially warned of other cuts or reductions in services.  The budget to run the operations at the SSA has actually declined by 10% compared to 2010 (adjusted for inflation), despite the fact that there are now 13% more beneficiaries in the system.  As 10,000 additional Baby Boomers reach retirement age each DAY, the burdens on the system are being felt.  I mention this to encourage people to become educated about their filing choices and to make their own plan with regards to Social Security.  Unless things change we will see a continuing degradation in the quality of service we all receive from the SSA offices and representatives as they simply become overwhelmed.

Register Online

If you have not yet registered online at www.ssa.gov/myaccount, I recommend you do that soon.  This will give you anytime access to your earnings record, statements and when the time comes, the ability to file for benefits.  All while avoiding a trip to your overcrowded Social Security office.

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