Anyone can make a mistake and the Social Security Administration (SSA) is no different. However, if you discover a mistake that leads to you not receiving the benefits that you deserve, you must take action to make sure that you correct the mistake.
The SSA will sometimes make an error with paperwork. This could lead to your benefits being reduced and they will send you a smaller check. However, if you report this to the SSA, they will eventually send a check to reimburse the money they originally should have sent you.
However, there is a statute of limitations and if you don't have the error corrected promptly, you will never receive a check to reimburse you. The SSA often immediately corrects the problem, but you may need to wait a while to receive a retroactive fix to make up for the money you should have already received.
Your benefits are based on your 35 highest-earning years. However, if your employer gave the SSA incorrect payment information, this may lead to the SSA providing you with less than what you are owed. You will receive a Social Security statement. Make sure to compare that with the income that is listed on your tax records.
If you have had your social security benefits reduced, you are able to file an appeal. There are also rules in place that require that you continue to receive your original payments while the appeal is being reviewed.
Therefore, if the SSA ultimately determines that your benefits should be reduced, you may still receive more than the reduced amount if you file an appeal. However, if the SSA overpays you, they may require that you reimburse them.
Documents are an important part of having errors corrected, such as your W-2s. However, sometimes these documents are not available. You will need to write down the name and address of your employer and when you worked for them so they can sort out discrepancies.
If you suspect that the SSA made a mistake, you will want to speak with a social security lawyer who knows the ins and outs of Social Security law. Otherwise, you might miss errors yourself and you might be missing out on benefits that you are owed. The sooner you sort out the errors, the less time that it will take for you to sort through the errors and receive what you are owed.