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Check out Social Security's online services

JOHN VOGT • Feb 24, 2007 at 10:24 AM

Check out Social Security's online services at www.socialsecurity.gov.

See if you qualify for Social Security benefits. You can use our online screening tool to see what benefits you might be eligible for from any of the programs Social Security administers. Then, you can use our benefit planners to calculate your benefit amounts, whether you're considering retirement or disability or the benefits available to your family if you die.

Apply for benefits. You can apply for Social Security retirement, spouse's or disability benefits over the Internet. If you are applying for disability benefits you'll need to complete the disability report, which is also available online. Need to take a break or look for records to answer the questions? You can leave and come back later. After you have applied, you can return to the Web site later to check for status.

Find the office closest to you. There is much you can do online, but sometimes you may want to visit a representative face-to-face. If that's the case, your first step is to visit our online field office locator. Just type in your zip code and find the Social Security office closest to you.

Get a Password. If you already get Social Security benefits, there's even more you can do online when you have a password. Anyone who gets benefits can get a password. With a password, you can check the information and benefit amounts in your Social Security records and change your address, telephone or direct deposit account information without leaving the comfort of your home.

So check out our Web site at www.socialsecurity.gov and go to the "What you can do online" section.

John Vogt is the Social Security district manager in Kingsport. Send questions to Vogt at Social Security, 2401 S. Wilcox Drive, Kingsport, Tenn., 37660.

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