If you’re looking for Social Security earnings information, you can easily set up an account through the Social Security Administration website and view an online statement. However, if you need more detailed information, or if you need a certified copy of your earnings record, then you’ll have to request this in writing by using Form SSA-7050.
In this article, we’ll walk through this form, technically referred to as Form SSA-7050-F, as well as some of what you can expect when requesting this type of Social Security information. Let’s start with some background information on how your earnings record works.
How do Social Security earnings work?
As most people realize, Social Security benefits depend largely upon the individual’s pay record. Specifically, the top 35 years of earnings.
So if an employer improperly reported your earnings, that might directly impact your Social Security benefits. And your spouse’s benefits, should your spouse collect survivor benefits based upon your work history.
Before collecting Social Security benefits, it’s usually prudent to verify that the earnings history is indeed correct. You can do a quick check through your online Social Security account to view your personal Social Security statement and to verify that your earnings history from past jobs looks in line.
But the best way to make sure your earnings history is correct is to review an itemized earnings statement. For that, you need to complete Form SSA-7050 and submit it to the Social Security Administration.
How do I complete Form SSA-7050?
Fortunately, this form is straightforward and very user friendly. We’ll go through it step by step, then cover some other things you should know.
Line 1: Social Security recipient’s information
In Line 1, you’ll enter the information for the person whose earnings history you’re requesting. This includes the following information:
- First name
- Last name
- Middle initial
- Social Security number
- Date of birth
- Date of death (if applicable)
- Maiden name or other name used
Most of the time, people request their own earnings history. However, there may be times when the requestor is asking for someone else’s earnings information.
Here are some of the circumstances that the Social Security Administration may recognize a third party.
The SSA recognizes that a guardian may request earnings history for certain minors or legally declared incompetent people. This is acceptable if the guardian is acting in the best interest of the individual.
The guardian must submit proof of the relationship, which may be one of the following:
- Birth certificate
- Court order
- Adoption decree
- Other legally binding document
Deceased person’s earnings
The following people may request earnings information on behalf of a deceased person:
- Legal representative of the estate
- Surviving spouse, parent, or child
- Includes divorced spouse of divorced parent
- Individuals with a material interest who is one of the following:
- Heir at law
- Next of kin
- Beneficiary under the decedent’s will or donee of property of the decedent
The SSA requires proof of death and proof of the requestor’s relationship to the decedent for this type of request.
Line 2: Type of earnings information required
Line 2 is a breakdown of the type of earning statement you need from the Social Security Administration. Here are the types of earnings statements you can choose from.
Types of earnings statements you can request from the Social Security Administration
Using this form, you can request three types of earnings statements.
Itemized statement of earnings (not certified)
This includes the names and addresses of previous employers.
An itemized statement might be of use if you need to contact a previous employer to review your earnings record, but you don’t have their contact information.
As of October 2022, an itemized statement costs $100.
Certified yearly totals of earnings
This is simply a certified version of the online statement you can download for free.
You may need this if you need a certified version of your earnings history. Otherwise, you probably don’t need a certified copy.
For a certified copy of your yearly earnings totals, the SSA charges $44.
Certified itemized statement of earnings
This simply is a certified version of the itemized statement selected above.
The cost for a certified, itemized statement of earnings is $144 ($100 plus $44).
You must choose only one type of earnings information. Otherwise, SSA will return your request without processing it.
Additionally, you’ll need to specifically state the years that you would like to cover. Finally, if you’re requesting an itemized statement, you need to justify why you need this information.
Line 3: Third party release
If you’re requesting on your own behalf, skip Line 3 and proceed to the signature field below.
If you want someone else to receive this information, you must complete this field, including:
- Zip code
Line 4: Signature
In Line 4, your signature declares, under penalty of perjury, that the information on your request form is accurate to the best of your knowledge.
If this is the case, sign your name and provide the date of signature in the field. Please note: The SSA must receive this form within 120 days of the signature date. If received afterwards, this form will be returned to you.
Additionally, list the following:
- Daytime phone number
- Mailing address, including city, state, zip code
If you are a legal guardian, you must note your relationship and attach a copy of proof of your relationship.
If you sign this form with ‘X,’ then two witnesses must sign this form and provide their full addresses.
Do I have to pay for my Social Security earnings information?
Yes. As of October 1, 2022, the SSA’s standard processing fees are:
- $44.00 for certified yearly earnings totals
- $100.00 for a non-certified detailed (itemized) earnings statement
- $144.00 for a certified detailed (itemized) earnings statement
The SSA also requires that you use the most current version of the form, with the correct fee schedule. If you use a prior version, it will be returned to you without processing.
How do I pay for my Social Security earnings statement?
According to the SSA website, you may pay by check, money order, or credit card. The form also contains the following section, should you choose to pay by credit card.
You can send your request via registered mail or by FedEx/UPS. However, this might cost more (private carriers) or take longer to process (registered mail).
How long will it take SSA to process my Form SSA-7050?
You can expect SSA to take up to 120 days to process this request.
After 120 days, you may contact 1-800-772-1213 to leave an inquiry regarding your request.
Where do I send my Form SSA-7050?
You should send your completed form to the following address, as listed on the SSA website:
Social Security Administration
P.O. Box 33011
Baltimore, Maryland 21290-33011
Where can I download a copy of Form SSA-7050?
You can download this form from the SSA website or by selecting the file below.
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