Applying for social security benefits is quite easy. Basically you can make a phone call at 800-772-1213 or just visit the local social security in person. If you apply for retirement and spousal benefits, there’s another option: applying online.
Currently, due to the coronavirus threat, the Social Security Administration temporarily closed local offices to the public. However, Social Security service is still available online and by phone.
There are many documents you need to prepare for retiremnet benefits, which might include:
- Your date and your place of birth.
- Your marital history and number of children.
- The start and stop dates for jobs you have in the past two years; if you are self-employed, you need to bring net income in the past two years.
- If you are veteran, you need to bring the proof of military service.
- Your routing number of the bank where you want Social Security to deposit your payment, and the number and type of your account.
If you want to apply for survivor benefits, you need to provide another lists of information, which includes:
- The Social Security number and death certificate of the late wage earner on whose record you are applying.
- Your Social Security number and those of any dependent children.
- Your birth certificate or an acceptable religious record of your birth.
- Your marriage certificate. Divorce papers needed if you are divorced and filing as a former spouse.
- The tax records with your earnings.
Applying social security online is quite easy and convenient. It is much safer considering the situation right now. Also, if you are living abroad currently and want to apply for Social Security benefits, you should contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.