Social Security: Online verification is simple

Social Security: Online verification is simple

July 11th, 2013 By Gregory Holmes in Business Diary

Gregory Holmes, district manager for Social Security

Q. "I need proof of my Social Security income. Can I get verification online?"

A. Yes! And the best way to get a benefit verification letter is by using a my Social Security account. Your personal my Social Security account is a convenient and secure way for you to check your benefit and payment information, change your address, phone

number, and direct deposit information, and to get your benefit verification letter. You can use your benefit verification letter to verify your income, retirement or disability status, Medicare eligibility, and age. When you use my Social Security to get it, you can request which information you would like included in the letter. Learn more, use my Social Security, and get your benefit verification letter now at www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount.

Q. "Will my Social Security disability benefit increase if my condition gets worse or I develop additional health problems?"

A. No. We do not base your Social Security benefit amount on the severity of your disability. The amount you are paid is based on your average lifetime earnings before your disability began. If you go back to work after getting disability benefits, you may be able to get a higher benefit based on those earnings. In addition, we have incentives that allow you to work temporarily without losing your disability benefits. For more information about disability benefits, read our publications Disability Benefits and Working While Disabled--How We Can Help. Both are available online at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs.

Q. "I pay my monthly premium directly to my Medicare prescription drug plan provider. Why can't I also pay my income-related monthly adjustment amount directly to my Medicare prescription drug plan provider?"

A. By law, we must deduct your income-related monthly adjustment amount from your Social Security payments. If the amount you owe is more than the amount of your payment, or you don't get monthly payments, you will get a separate bill from another federal agency, such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services or the Railroad Retirement Board. Read our publication, Medicare Premiums: Rules for Higher-Income Beneficiaries, for an idea of what you can expect to pay. You'll find it at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs.

Submit questions to local Social Security Director Gregory Holmes by writing to Business Editor Dave Flessner, Chattanooga Times Free Press, P.O. Box 1447, or by emailing him at dflessner@timesfreepress.com.