Retirement & Financial Planning Report

The SSA once again is changing its policy regarding mailing of benefits estimates to those still working, its third such change in six years.

Up to 2011, the SSA mailed those statements annually to everyone paying Social Security taxes, several months before the individual’s birthday. However, as a cost-cutting effort, it then stopped that practice and instead urged workers to create a My Social Security account on its website where they could see the same projections along with other information.


However, advocacy groups for older persons complained that not all of them have online access or wish to create such accounts out of concern about identity theft. Under pressure from Congress, the SSA in 2014 resumed the mailings but only on a restricted basis–when people hit a five-year age interval starting with age 25, up to drawing benefits.

However, the SSA recently said that due to budget restrictions–that among other things caused the imposition of a hiring freeze predating the general Trump administration federal hiring freeze–it now will mail those statements only to those age 60 and older who are not yet collecting benefits and who do not have an online account.

The change will save an estimated $11 million a year in processing and mailing costs, the agency said.