Can We Visit A Different Social Security Office Than The One Closest To Us?

Feb 7 2017 - 5:30am

My husband is 66.5 and plans on filing this month for benefits. A recent letter from SS says you receive an 8% increase for each year you delay filing until age 70. Question: if he waits until his 67th birthday (9/16); will he receive the 8% increase? I called Social Security with this question, and they advised us to go to my local office where they'd be able to do the projection. They further said we MUST go to the local office determined by our zip code (which is in an area we don't feel is safe). Are you aware of any rule that supports that?

Hi,

The official Social Security policy is that you can receive service from any office that you choose to visit(https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0200904064). However, people are encouraged to visit their servicing office in an attempt to level out workloads, and I've heard that some offices refuse service to people outside of their area in spite of Social Security's official policy. If this happens to you, I would suggest asking to speak with a supervisor, or calling the issue to the attention of one of your Congressional representatives.

If you only want to know about delayed retirement credits (DRCs), I can answer that question for you. If your husband delays taking his benefits until age 67, his rate will be 8% higher than his age 66 rate. However, DRCs are initially only credited through December of the year prior to the month of entitlement, so if your husband turns 67 in a month other than January, he won't receive the full 8% higher rate until his payment for January of the next year . Before filing, your husband may want to consider running the maximization software available on this website in order to make sure that he chooses the best option.

Best, Jerry