Q: I'm planning to retire next year. I served in the Navy back in the 1960s and need to make sure I get credit for my military service. What do I need to do?
A: You don't need to do anything to apply for the special credit for your military service — it is added automatically. For service between 1957 and 1967, we will add the extra credits to your record at the time you apply for Social Security benefits. For service between 1968 and 2001, those extra military service credits have already been added to your record. So you can rest assured that we have you covered. Read our online publication, Military Service and Social Security, at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10017.html. And when the time comes to apply for retirement, you can do it conveniently and easily at www.socialsecurity.gov/retireonline.
Eligibility requirements for children
Q: I have young children at home and I plan to retire next fall. Will my children be eligible for monthly Social Security checks after I retire?
A: Monthly Social Security payments may be made to your children if they are:
Unmarried and under age 18;
Age 19 if still in high school; or
Age 18 or over, who became severely disabled before age 22 and continue to be disabled.
In addition to biological children, legally adopted children, dependent stepchildren, and grandchildren could be eligible. For more information, please read our publication Benefits for Children at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10085.html.
This column was prepared by the Social Security Administration. For fast answers to specific Social Security questions, contact Social Security toll-free at (800) 772-1213.