Paper Social Security statements are back

The Social Security Administration will resume mailing paper earnings statements to many Americans in September.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 29, 2014 2:36PM

This post comes from Krystal Steinmetz at partner site Money Talks News. 

Money Talks News on MSN MoneyHave you missed the paper Social Security benefits statements you used to receive annually in the mail? You'll be happy to know that the Social Security Administration plans to resume mailing the benefits statements in September.

Social Security Card © Tom Grill/Photographers Choice RF/Getty ImagesBut not everyone will receive the paper statements, which estimate future Social Security earnings.

The mailed statements fell victim to budget cuts in 2011.

Reuters said the paper statements will be mailed to workers at ages 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60 and older. If you've signed up to view your benefits statements online, you will not get the mailed statement.

AARP said the mailed earnings statements are important for many Americans, because so few people -- about 11 million -- have signed up to read them online.

"Social Security is and will continue to be the foundation to a secure retirement," said Gary Koenig, director of economic security at the AARP Public Policy Institute. "It is important that people have a basic understanding of what their benefits may be when planning for their future."

The Social Security Administration decided to reinstate mailed statements after receiving "pressure from the paper industry and advocacy groups for the elderly and other Americans who do not have regular access to the Internet," The Washington Post said.

John Runyan, executive director of Consumers for Paper Options, said in a statement, "Millions of Americans, including the 25 percent without Internet access, have no way to verify the accuracy of their Social Security benefits, or even plan for retirement without the mailed Social Security earnings statements."

Do you prefer to view your Social Security earnings statements on paper or online?

More from Money Talks News


Apr 29, 2014 5:32PM
Why do we always hear about SS possibly running out but we never hear about welfare running out??
Apr 29, 2014 4:04PM

What's missing from this article:

Not mailing statements every year saved money, but it also served a political agenda. When Americans don't see an annual statement of future benefits, these future benefits slip from their minds. Then when their future arrives, they aren't so shocked if their benefits have been lowered, postponed, or erased.

The timely mailing of paper statements just reminds participants the plan still exists and what current policy is. Philosophically agree with the SSA or disagree with it, mailed statements to all is a simple act of transparency.

Apr 29, 2014 4:08PM
I prefer the paper statements, mailed to me yearly, after or near my birthday.
Apr 29, 2014 3:23PM
I would prefer to receive back all the money I paid into this government scam,
Apr 29, 2014 4:18PM

My father paid into Social Security so his father could draw on it.

I paid into Social Security so my father could draw on it.

Now it is my sons responsibility to do the same.  I hope that generation has the responsibility to do so.

Apr 29, 2014 3:17PM

Ponzi schemes. Illegal for you or me, but when the government does it, it's ".. the foundation to a secure retirement".

What a joke. How about you let me keep my money, and plan for my own retirement? I have my own best interest in mind. The government doesn't.

Apr 30, 2014 6:35AM
I No Longer trust the United States Government with MY money...They are ALL crooks..
Apr 29, 2014 4:10PM
I would prefer the paper statements, mailed yearly, on or after my birthday (they have to track it anyway to update the records and benefits).
Apr 29, 2014 4:56PM
I was never able to get mine online - always came back with an error.  SO GLAD the paper is being reinstated so that if there's a question in a few years when I retire, I'll have a hard copy.
Apr 29, 2014 3:15PM

AAHH Yes, The almighty Dollar.


"The Social Security Administration decided to reinstate mailed statements after receiving "pressure from the paper industry"


   It's always about the money.

Aint America grand?

Apr 29, 2014 6:13PM
I got news for you,  In the 17 years that I have been drawing SS, I have now gotten back over five times what I paid in. I have friends who preferred 401K type accounts who lost their a... in 2008.

Americans have long since proved they are unable to plan for retirement well and SS is in fact, not intended to be a total retirement package but something for those who have little to nothing in their old age. 

If you are financially set, don't complain, brag actually.
Apr 29, 2014 9:11PM
Same as my bank - I would like my statements mailed. I'm paying & would like a statement without having to remember to go ask for it & print it out myself.
Apr 29, 2014 8:26PM
Older people (like myself) have trouble keeping their computers and printers going properly and like important papers in their old fashioned file cabinets. I retired before computers were big so I know. I get SS online but always panic it will get messed up and paying bills online is still quite scary.
Apr 29, 2014 6:55PM
We should be getting them every year as record of what we were promised so we 1. have proof.  2.  When (not if) they try to screw us we will be notified.
Apr 29, 2014 9:27PM

Twenty years ago no one suggested not having Social Security it was considered a lifeline in old age. Starting with Bush #43 a push was made to allow people to invest in private accounts if they wished. The problem with the Republican plan is in the fine print. They seldom mention that as in the Ryan plan this would include government guarantee's against loss of principle in the event of a meltdown. In a 2008 type meltdown if even half the population was invested in private plans over decades we could be looking at 20 trillion or more to cover that guarantee, maybe a lot more. Eliminate the guarantee and safety net programs from those who chose to gamble instead of the alternative. A modest Social Security and Medicare program that at least offers modest safeguards for old age. People shouldn't be able to risk their retirement then have the responsible ones pick up the tab if that risk doesn't pan out.

Apr 30, 2014 9:12AM
We all know the government is broken and cannot function properly. But, complaining about it is never going to solve any of this. It takes enough citizens to stand up and organize groups to march to D.C. demanding answers to how our tax dollars are being spent. They are not going to listen to a bunch of faceless people. They will respond only if everyone organizes groups and go before congress and outline what they need to do and take names and vote out everyone of them if a deadline on issues are not met, without excuses. But, it is going to take action in large numbers. November is the first place to began this process. First, clean out congress of all who is running for re-election who has contributed to the mess we are faced with now. Then place on probation the ones that are voted into office and if they fail us, then vote them out also. Deadlines must be met without exceptions. Politicians are great at coming up with all kinds of excuses and blaming everyone else for their incompetency. On our jobs, we are told what to do and how to do it by our supervisors and if we fail, then we are either disciplined or dismissed. The same should go for all elected officials. But, it seems they have no one supervising them and they know they have a job for four years and figure we will all have forgotten it by the next election time. Wrong! We should vote to block any raises they get for poor performances or form a committee to review their records. I know all this is easier said than done. So if there are other ways to tackle these problems, I wish some others could voice their opinions on this.
Most people fail to realize that social security is far than just a retirement program.  It's there for survivors and disabled  too.  All these programs cost money, and that's why you don't get rich on it in your retirement.  However, it's therr for your spouse and kids if you die before your kids are grown, and it's their if you become disabled and can no longer work.  It's a lifesaver, and those of us, like myself, who have collected on all its benefits, can attest to that.  I collected it for 2 years, back in the '60's, when my father died before I reached 21 (back then you could get it up until 21, whereas today it's only until you reach 18), and when I became disabled in 1990 at 45 years old, it carried me for the next 21 years until I reached full retirement age in 2011.  Those of you who continually complain about it may someday owe your life to it.
Apr 30, 2014 2:32PM
how nice...I suppose the statements will be printed in Spanish now so that, sorry "undocumented" immigrants can figure out how to get all the benefits they are not entitled to
Apr 29, 2014 5:29PM
Why in hell does a person 25 years old need to know how much he has in social security. Talk about a waste of money and they don't even hide the fact that they did it because paper companies need the money. They're not even smart enough to understand how that sounds to the tax payer, what a bunch of morons.
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