Q: My spouse died recently and my neighbor said my children and I might be eligible for survivors' benefits. Don't I have to be retirement age to receive benefits?
A: No. As a survivor, you can receive benefits at any age if you are caring for a child who is receiving Social Security benefits and who is under age 16. Your children are eligible for survivors' benefits through Social Security up to age 19 if they are unmarried and attending elementary or secondary school full time. If you are not caring for minor children, you would need to wait until age 60 (age 50 if disabled) to collect survivors benefits. For more information about survivors benefits, read our publication Survivors Benefits at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs.
Is there an easy way to file W-2s?
Q: I run a bed and breakfast. By this time every year, I am tired of all the paperwork involved with filing taxes. Is there an easier way for small businesses to file W-2s for their employees?
A: Absolutely. If you are a small business owner or entrepreneur, you should check out Social Security's Business Services Online (BSO) website. There, you can file your employees' W-2s and W-2cs electronically and print out the W-2s to provide paper copies to your employees. You also can verify the Social Security numbers of your employees. Our online services are easy to use, fast, and secure. Visit our BSO page at www.socialsecurity.gov/bso.
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. For more information, visit www.socialsecurity.gov.