1. You are at least 62 years old throughout the month
Social Security has this special age 62 rule for retired workers and their spouses who file for benefits. You cannot receive a retirement benefit or an aged wife's benefit unless you are 62 throughout the entire month. This means that you cannot receive Social Security Retirement benefits in the month of your sixty second birthday. You will only be eligible the following month onwards. This rule does not apply to widows.
If your sixty second birthday is on the first day of the month, you will be eligible. You will also be eligible for the month's benefit if your birthday is on the second day of the month. This is because, for Social Security purposes, you attain your age the day before your birthday. In another word, if your birthday is on July 2nd, then, according to Social Security, you became age 62 on July 1st. Therefore, you are eligible to Social Security Retirement benefits that month. However, if your birthday is on July 3rd, then you will have to wait until August to be eligible for Social Security Retirement benefits. You are eligible to the Social Security Retirement benefits any month after the month you turn 62.
2. You have enough work covered by Social Security to be 'fully insured'.
To qualify for Social Security Retirement benefits, you or the person on whose earnings record you claim benefits must have worked a certain amount of time in employment covered by Social Security. Almost all employment in the US is covered by Social Security. Click here to read more about Social Security Insured Status.
3. You file an application
You must file an application with the Social Security Administration (SSA) to be eligible for Social Security Retirement benefits. Click here to read more about the Social Security Administration (SSA). The Social Security Administration (SSA) has its own forms for different benefits applications. The Social Security Administration (SSA) prefers their own representatives to fill out these forms. To file a claim, you can either visit your local District Office to file an application or you can do it by phone.
Can I file the application if I'm not sure whether I qualify?
If you are in doubt whether you qualify for Social Security benefits, you should file an application. If you do not qualify, then your application will be denied. However, you should file it.
How important is the application date?
The date your application is filed is very important. It can affect how much Social Security benefits you can receive as past-due benefits. Without having to file an application to the Social Security, you can file a written statement showing your intent to claim benefits with the Social Security Administration (SSA). Filing a written intent with the Social Security Administration (SSA) can protect your filing date when you later file a formal application.