Where is My Social Security Annual Earnings Statement?
For many years, nearly every American who was actively paying Social Security tax received an annual earning statement from the Social Security Administration (SSA). This statement provided information regarding individuals’ earnings history and expected Social Security benefits, which was especially useful to those approaching retirement and for confirming proper credit for taxes paid.
After eliminating paper statements in 2011 due to budget cuts, the SSA has partially resumed mailing them to people who have not signed up to view them online. Statements will be sent to workers every five years if you are under the age of 60, and every year if you are over the age of 60. If you need the information between statements or prefer not to receive paper, don’t fret as you can still easily get your information online by setting up an account.
How to register for a Social Security account
To retrieve your Social Security annual statements online, you need to be at least 18 years old and have a:
- Valid email address;
- Social Security Number; and
- U.S. mailing address
If you meet these criteria, register for a my Social Security account on the SSA website, and follow these instructions:
- Under the New Users section, select Create an Account.
- Select “I agree to the Terms of Service” at the bottom and select Next.
- Enter in your personal information: name, Social Security Number (SSN), date of birth (DOB), address, and phone number. Then, select “Answer the personal questions” to deter identity theft and select Next.
- Enter in your username, password, email, and security questions for establishing your account and select Next.
- After you've successfully created an account, select Next.
- Select “I agree to the Terms of Service” at the bottom and select Next, which will log you into your account.
The password has several requirements, so please take note on the website for qualifications. In addition, the security questions are important if you forget your password. You will have to answer a question to verify your account and reset your password.
The importance of your Social Security annual statement
Your Social Security earnings determine your eventual benefits. Watch your statements now to confirm your earnings by verifying credited wages in each year. While you may not know your exact earnings each year, most errors are obvious where the SSA either does not post any earnings or posts a very low earnings number due to errant employer reporting.
Additionally, the annual earnings statement provides valuable information for retirement planning, such as:
- Estimated benefits at the time of your full retirement, age 70, and early retirement (age 62)
- Estimated benefits for disability insurance
- Survivor benefit information
The annual statement is extremely valuable when planning for retirement.
How we can help
Contact your advisor to help analyze all of your retirement needs. We can help you begin with a vision and goals for your post-work years, and then design a strategy to help make them a reality.