En español | The Social Security Administration (SSA) has temporarily closed all field offices nationwide for in-person service amid the coronavirus outbreak.
"This decision protects the population we serve — older Americans and people with underlying medical conditions — and our employees during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic,” the SSA said in a statement. “However, we are still able to provide critical services."
The closures serve as a reminder that one way you can always check on your benefits or get help for issues like ordering a replacement Social Security card is by setting up and using your personal My Social Security account online. You can also use this account to arrange for direct deposit for your benefits, change your address or phone number, or get other kinds of help.
The SSA also provides a toll-free telephone help line you may use if your field office is closed: 800-772-1213 (TTY 800-325-0778). You may also call your local field office directly.
The SSA said that if you already have an in-office appointment scheduled, your appointment will be handled by phone instead. For hearings that were already scheduled, the agency will call you to discuss alternatives, including offering a hearing by phone. The SSA notes that the calls may come from a private number rather than a government phone, but that their employees will never threaten you or demand any form of payment.
The SSA did not announce a date for when the offices might reopen for in-person service. The agency says it will work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local governments in making that determination.
Editor's note: This story was updated with new information about the closure of offices nationwide.