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What paperwork do I need to bring in to start my social security benefits and widows benefits?

Q) What paperwork do I need to bring in order to discuss when to start my social security benefits and widows benefits?

A) The Social Security Administration will need to see certain documents in order to pay benefits and help decide how much your benefits you are entitled to. The documents you’ll need will depend on the circumstances of your claim.

The documents they may ask for to apply for Social Security Benefits:

  • Your Social Security card (or a record of your number);
  • Your original birth certificate or other proof of birth (You may also submit a copy of your birth certificate certified by the issuing agency);
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship or lawful alien status if you were not born in the U.S. (more info);
  • A copy of your U.S. military service paper(s) (e.g., DD-214 – Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty) if you had military service before 1968; and
  • A copy of your W-2 form(s) and/or self-employment tax return for last year.




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