If 2013 is your year to retire, start preparing now

Published 2:30 pm Thursday, September 27, 2012

Do you plan to begin receiving Social Security retirement benefits early in 2013?  If so, now is the time to prepare, according to a press release from the Georgia Area Director’s Office of the Social Security Administration (SSA).
The SSA recommends that citizens apply up to four months before they want their retirement benefits to begin.
These days, citizens no longer need to travel to an office or wait in line to apply for benefits. It can be done from a home or office computer. The Social Security website at www.socialsecurity.gov makes the process easy and convenient.
Citizens can complete their applications for retirement benefits in as little as 15 minutes. In most cases, after submitting an online application electronically, that’s all that needs to be done. There are no forms to sign or additional paperwork to complete. In rare cases where additional information is needed, a representative will request it.
Not ready to retire yet? Perhaps it’s time to plan ahead and begin considering  the options regarding when to retire. In that case, visit Social Security’s website to use SSA’s convenient and informative retirement planner at www.socialsecurity.gov/retire2. Here, anyone can find out just how close they are to meeting financial goals, and then “bookmark” the website to apply for retirement benefits whenever they are ready.
The SSA encourages people at any stage in their working careers to use the Retirement Estimator for an instant, personalized estimate of future retirement benefits. Find it at www.socialsecurity.gov/estimator.
Here’s to a lucky 2013. If you’re planning to retire and begin receiving Social Security benefits in January, start the year off right by applying online now for Social Security benefits.

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