Social Security info for Today's Seniors

How to ...

Correct an error in your Social Security earnings record

Every year Social Security sends each of us "Your Social Security Statement." It includes a section called "Your Earnings Record at a Glance." It is important that you review your record very closely to be sure that you have been credited with all of your earnings. If some of your earnings are missing, your retirement benefits will be reduced. The longer you wait to correct errors, the more difficult it will be.

If you find an error, call Social Security toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 from 7 am to 7 pm every business day. Or, you can take your records to your local Social Security office. You can find it at your local Social Security office.

To correct your earnings record, they will need to know your name, Social Security number, the year or years that are not correct, and your employer's name and address in those years. If available, please have your W-2 forms (or tax returns if you are self-employed) for the incorrect years handy when you call or visit them.

If nothing is posted for a year in which you know you worked, please contact Social Security even if you don't have your W-2 or tax return. Those records would have helped them make the correction faster, but they may be able to search their records using the information you can give them about your employer's business name and address.

If you live outside the United States and can't use our their telephone number, you can write to them at the following address:

Social Security Administration
Office of Central Operations
P.O. Box 17775
Baltimore, MD 21235-7775

Be sure to include copies of your W-2s or other records if they are available.

Remember: Social Security may still be processing your earnings for last year, so they may not yet be on your record. (If you had more than one employer during the year, each one reports separately and the information may be added to your record at different times.) Your earnings for this year won't be reported to Social Security until next year.

After Social Security corrects your record, they will send you a letter telling you the correction has been made. Your next annual Statement after that will also show the correction. If you need an updated Statement sooner than that, you can ask for one after you get your letter about the correction.

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