This Thanksgiving, Pass The Mouse

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Thanksgiving is almost here. Families across the nation will come together to share more than a meal — to share warm memories, and to make them.

While the family is together, it may be the perfect time to help Mom or Dad, Grandma or Grandpa, or your favorite aunt or uncle. Just ask them to pass the mouse — the computer mouse. Relax in front of the computer and show them how easy it is to conduct their Social Security business online. Just visit www.socialsecurity.gov.

There are a number of the things you can help your loved ones do online. Use the Benefit Eligibility Screening Tool, or BEST, to see whether they qualify for benefits. Or use the Retirement Estimator for an instant and personalized estimate of their retirement benefits.

But perhaps the best thing you can do to help them this Thanksgiving is to go beyond just helping them prepare — help your loved ones apply online for Social Security benefits.

It’s so easy to apply for retirement benefits online. There’s no need to drive to a local Social Security office or wait for an appointment with a Social Security representative.

Need to take a break or look for some records to answer the questions — or snack on leftovers?

In most cases, once the application is submitted electronically, that’s it. There are no forms to sign and usually no further documents required. Social Security will process the application and contact your loved one if any further information is needed. After you have applied, you can check back online for the status of your application as well.

So once you’ve stuffed yourself with turkey and pie, pass the mouse and visit Social Security’s online services at www.socialsecurity.gov.

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