Q: How can I get a new Medicare card?
Answer: If your red, white and blue Medicare card is lost, stolen or damaged, you can request a new one at www.socialsecurity.gov. However, you can use our online application only to request a Medicare card. If you need a Medicaid card, please contact your state Medicaid office.
Q: My parents recently moved into a retirement community and they are signing their house over to me. Can I still get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or will home ownership make me ineligible?
Answer: You can own a home and still receive SSI as long as you live in the home you own. In most cases, when determining SSI eligibility we don’t count as a resource the home you own and live in or the car you use. For more information about SSI and Social Security, visit www.socialsecurity.gov, or call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).
Q: Is it true that 10,000 people are retiring each day? What is the best way for me to apply and avoid long lines in my Social Security office?
Answer: Yes, it’s true. The best way is to use our online retirement application at www.socialsecurity.gov. You can complete it in as little as 15 minutes. It’s so easy. You can apply from the comfort of your home or office at a time most convenient for you. Once you’ve electronically submitted your application, you’re done. In most cases, there’s no need to submit any documents. There’s also no need to drive to a local Social Security office or wait for an appointment with a Social Security representative.
Q: Does Social Security offer tools for retirement planning?
Answer: Yes. Social Security offers several retirement planning tools to help you better understand your Social Security protection as you plan for your financial future. Go to www.socialsecurity.gov/planners to get started. Then choose a benefit calculator to estimate your monthly benefit amounts.
This column was prepared by the Social Security Administration. For fast answers to specific Social Security questions, contact Social Security toll-free at 800-772-1213. For more information, visit www.socialsecurity.gov.