Social-Security-cards-460x300This is the amount of time you are given to correct a mistake in your Earnings History with the Social Security Administration.  In my years of working with clients, I have noticed that mistakes are not uncommon.  It is important that you get credit for every dollar earned because these earnings are used to calculate your retirement benefit (and potentially, the benefits of your spouse and survivors).

The Social Security Administration used to send everyone an annual statement which included your lifetime earnings record, as well as estimates of retirement, disability and family survivor benefits.  You can now get this information online at  The online report, which can be printed, does include a list of your lifetime earnings according to Social Security’s records.  If you find that any earnings are missing or are shown incorrectly, find your W-2 or tax return for the applicable year, then call the SSA at 1-800-772-1213.

What else your statement includes:

  • Estimates of the retirement and disability benefits you may receive;
  • Estimates of benefits your family may get when you receive Social Security or die;
  • The estimated Social Security and Medicare taxes you’ve paid;
  • Information about qualifying and signing up for Medicare;
  • Things to consider for those age 55 and older who are thinking of retiring.