Every individual who works and pays Social Security taxes (called FICA on some pay stubs) earns Social Security credits to apply toward retirement. Most people earn the maximum four credits per year.
The number of credits needed to get retirement benefits depends on an individual's date of birth. People born in 1929 or later need 40 credits to claim Social Security benefits - or 10 years worth of work. Social Security benefits are based on earnings averaged over most of one's working career.
If you need assistance in your interactions with the Social Security Administration, the Congresswoman's office may be able to help.
Please contact one of her district offices in Martinsburg or Charleston, or send her a message about your claim by clicking here. The Congresswoman's staff will likely ask that you complete a Privacy Act Release form before they can begin your case.
To apply for benefits or to make an appointment to visit your local Social Security office in person, individuals can call the Social Security Administration at 800-772-1213 or visit their website.
Depending on individual circumstances, some or all of the documents listed below are needed to apply for Social Security benefits. Individuals who don't have all of the outlined paperwork should not delay in applying for benefits. The Social Security office can help obtain proper documentation.
- Social Security Number
- Birth Certificate
- W-2 forms or last year's tax returns
- Proof of citizenship or lawful alien status
- Name of your bank and your account number
- Military discharge papers, if applicable
- Spouse's birh certificate and Social Security number if he or she is applying for benefits
- Children's birth certificates and Social Security numbers if applying for children's benefits
For more information about the type of assistance Congresswoman Capito and her staff may be able to provide, please visit "How Shelley Can Help You," and for information about the Congresswoman's efforts to improve Social Security, along with other programs for West Virginia seniors, please visit Legislative Issues: Seniors.