What Social Security Customer Service Reps Can and Can't Tell You

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Most customer service representatives will not only provide you with information but also give advice. That, however, is not the case if ever you speak with a customer service representative at the Social Security Administration.

In fact, the Social Security Administration has a handbook called the Program Operation Manual System (POMS) that clearly defines what the administration’s employees can and cannot do for claimants.

The section of the POMS pertaining to taking claims states the following: customer service representatives can “provide enough information so that claimants can make informed decisions, but do not give advice.”

Essentially, Heather Schrieber of HLS Retirement Consulting, says Social Security Administration customer service representatives can tell you how much your monthly benefit will be at various election ages but they can’t help you determine the best claiming strategy.

For that, you’ll have to find help elsewhere.

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