You are the only one that can confirm the accuracy of your Social Security earnings record. Without timely correction of any errors, you may be short-changing yourself when benefit checks start. Thankfully SSA’s on-line tools make it easier than ever to check your statement.

Most of us go through life without being concerned with, or ever checking on, our Social Security records. We assume the money deducted each payday and an equal amount paid in by our employer is applied properly to this valuable retirement benefit.

The Social Security Administration receives a vast amount of paperwork each year. They can and do make errors and omissions. It is up to each of us to follow up and make sure our work history is being credited properly. Waiting until retirement may be too late to correct an error made 10 to 20 years back.

It is to your advantage to review your Social Security statements each year. Thankfully, it is now easier to do so as the Social Security Administration has an online tool that allows you to review your historic earnings statements online at

The online signup process includes many safety measures to ensure your identity is protected.

The online tools also estimate your potential benefit using your current wages. If you see an error on your statement you should immediately correct it. You can do this by contacting the Social Security Administration:

Telephone: 1.800.772.1213
By mail: Social Security Administration Office of Earnings Operations PO Box 33026 Baltimore, MD 21290-3026

Caution: The law sets a time limit of 3 years, 3 months, and 15 days after the year your wages are paid or that self-employment income was earned to report earnings. This limit is especially important to note if you are self-employed or have not filed a tax return. The best protection? Conduct an annual review of your earnings report and make timely corrections.

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