If you receive Social Security benefits of any sort (whether SSDI disability benefits, SSI benefits, or retirement benefits), you have less than a year left to make the switch to receiving them electronically. Effective March 1, 2013, the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) will require all beneficiaries to receive benefits electronically.
For recent beneficiaries, you already receive your benefits electronically, since the SSA has required it of new beneficiaries since May 1, 2011. For those who started receiving their benefits before that day and have continued to opt for a paper check, you have two options to receive your benefits electronically – direct deposit into your bank account or a payment card that functions like a debit card. Both methods eliminate the chances of your check being delayed or lost. They will also help the SSA save $1 billion over the next decade, according to government analysts.
Social Security Benefits and Direct Deposit
To use direct deposit, you will need a checking or savings account, along with just two numbers: your bank’s routing number (the bank can provide this to you) and your account number. You can note this information at the time you apply for Social Security benefits, or, if you are already receiving benefits, you can submit a form to the SSA. If you would like to learn more about receiving disability benefits, information is available from a Tulsa Oklahoma Social Security Disability attorney.
Social Security Benefits and the Direct Express Card
The alternative to direct deposit is the SSA’s “Direct Express” card, which functions like a debit card. The SSA will mail you the Direct Express card, and then it will deposit your benefits into the card’s account each month without having to mail you anything. You can use the card just as you would a debit card – you can make purchases with it or withdraw cash. If you are currently receiving a paper check for your benefits and do not make a change before next March’s deadline, the SSA will automatically start sending you a Direct Express card come next year.
Do you currently use any of Social Security’s electronic or online services? What has your experience been with these methods?