By Rosalie Alviar
Social Security Regional Public Affairs Specialist in Dallas, TX
“There’s been an awakening. Have you felt it?”
This winter, Americans of all generations are awakening to the newest film in the Star Wars franchise, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Many readers probably remember seeing the first Star Wars film in theaters in 1977. Audiences watched with fascination at the advanced technology used by the Jedi and Sith in a galaxy far, far away.
We still don’t have interstellar travel, personal robots, or holographic communication, but we now use technology in our daily lives that would have seemed like science fiction in 1977. At that time, it would still be years until the modern Internet and smart phones would be part of our lives. Now, many of us can’t imagine life without such technology.
Many people who need to do business with Social Security are finding an awakening of sorts in how easy it is to use our online services. We continually expand our online services to reflect changing customer needs, and to provide you with world-class service that would even have interplanetary traveler Han Solo saying, “Chewie, we’re home.” Our online services are convenient and secure, and allow you to conduct much of your business with us from the comfort of your home, office, or space freighter. (Not all services are available in all galaxies).
For instance, you can use our website at www.socialsecurity.gov to apply for retirement, spouse’s, or disability benefits online. You can also apply for Medicare and Extra Help with your Medicare prescription drug costs on our website. We also have online benefit planners to help you estimate your future retirement, disability, and survivors benefits.
You can open a free personal online my Social Security account, where you can keep track of your annual earnings and verify them. Why is that important? Because your future benefits are based on your annual earnings. With your account, you can also get an estimate of your future benefits if you are still working; or, if you currently receive benefits, you can use your account to manage your benefits, and get an instant letter with proof of your benefits. You can also request a Medicare card replacement.
“The force is calling to you. Just let it in.” This winter, check out our online services and join the millions of other Americans who have already awakened their own personal my Social Security accounts. A my Social Security account is a force to be reckoned with. And you don’t need to be a Jedi to have one.
Learn more at www.socialsecurity.gov. Once you go online, this force will be with you … always.