The Social Security online Retirement Estimator, available at http://www.socailsecurity.gov/estimator, now can provide immediate and personalized benefit estimates to individuals who have enrolled in Medicare but have not yet filed for Social Security benefits. Previously, these "Medicare only" beneficiaries were required to contact a local office in order to obtain estimates of their benefits. Currently, about a 500,000 people file for Medicare and delay filing for Social Security benefits each year.
"Social Security's Retirement Estimator has been a huge success - with the agency providing over four million personalized retirement estimates to Americans since its launch last year," Commissioner Astrue said. "With more people delaying retirement beyond the Medicare eligibility age, it is critical that they also have access to this easy-to-use online tool."
The Retirement Estimator is interactive; it allows users to compare different retirement scenarios. For example, a person can change retirement dates or expected future earnings to assess the impact on their future benefits and determine the best time to retire. The Retirement Estimator presently has the highest customer satisfaction rating of any government online service and, according to the University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index, it even trumps the ratings of private sector online innovators such as Netflix and Amazon.
Commissioner Astrue also announced the Retirement Estimator will be the first Social Security online service to be made available in Spanish. "Social Security serves a diverse population and we already offer services by phone and in-person in a variety of languages," Commissioner Astrue noted. "Offering the Retirement Estimator in Spanish will be an important step in making our online services even easier for everyone to use."
To learn more about the Retirement Estimator go to http://www.socialsecurity.gov/estimator