Starting in October 1999, the Social Security Administration began mailing individualized Social Security statements to 125 million workers age 25 and older who are not currently receiving Social Security benefits.

The statements are being mailed on a staggered schedule according to birth month, with statements scheduled for mailing about three months before your birthday. Statements will be mailed on an annual basis.

The four-page statement can help you with financial planning by providing estimates of retirement, disability and survivors' benefits. The statement provides an easy way to check on the accuracy of earnings posted on your Social Security record. Here are the things to check and what to do about them if there is a mistake on your statement:

* Wrong address. If you have moved since your last federal income tax return was filed, notify the Internal Revenue Service, not Social Security. Social Security does not keep your address in its system until you actually apply for benefits. In the meantime, it relies on the address from your latest income tax return. Submit Form 8822 to the IRS to change your home mailing address. You can get the form by calling the IRS at (800) 829-3676.

* Wrong name or date of birth. If this vital information is wrong you will have to correct it by completing form SS-5, application for a Social Security card. This form is available from your local Social Security office. If you do not know the location of the office, call (800) 772-1213.

* Errors in your earnings record. Carefully check over your earnings record to make sure that it matches your own earnings record. The best place to check is with your copies of the W-2 forms you've attached to your federal income tax returns from previous years. If there is a discrepancy, contact your social security office or call (800) 772-1213.
Further information about the Social Security statement can be found at www.ssa.gov/mystatement/index.htm.

www.ssa.gov/mystatement/index.htm