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Social Security Question and Answer

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By ALICE MOSES-TURNER
Social Security District Manager, Gainesville

 Question:
Is it true I must now receive my benefits through direct deposit?
Answer:
Anyone applying for benefits on or after May 1, 2011, will be required to receive their payments electronically, while those already receiving paper checks will need to switch by March 1, 2013. Paper checks will no longer be an option for most people. If you don’t have a bank account, you can receive your benefits through the Direct Express debit Mastercard. Switching from checks to electronic payments is fast, easy and free at  www.godirect.org. You also can call the U.S. Treasury Processing Center’s toll-free helpline at-1-800-333-1795, speak with a bank or credit union representative, or contact Social Security for help.
Question:
How do I know when it’s the right time for me to apply for retirement benefits?
Answer:


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