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Don’t let record-keeping mistakes cost you thousands

Social Security benefits are based on one’s average indexed monthly earnings from the 35 highest-earning years.  But as this article points out, the Social Security Administration (SSA) does make mistakes.  If not caught, that would mean a serious reduction in benefits.

Over $1.2 trillion in uncredited wages has ended up in the SSA’s Earnings Suspense File (ESF).  But what causes mistakes?Between 2008 and 2012, 95% of W-2s that ended up in the ESF did so due to discrepancies between the name or Social Security Number taxpayers submitted and the one on file at the SSA.  Of the remaining 5%, 3% were assigned a special indicator code because the individual disclaimed the wages, died, or appeared to be a minor child.  The last 2% gave invalid Social Security Numbers that resembled Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers.  Read the full article here for information on how to keep track of your credited wages on-line, and how to fix mistakes you find.

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