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If I claim Social Security benefits at full retirement age, when will I get my first payment?

En español | Once you have applied, it could take up to three months to receive your first benefit payment. Social Security benefits are paid monthly, starting in the month after the birthday.

Generally, the day of the month you receive your benefit depends on the birth date of the person on whose record you are collecting. If the birthday is between the 1st and the 10th of the month, you will receive your payment on the second Wednesday of the month after that birthday. If the birthday is between the 11th and the 20th, you will receive your payment on the third Wednesday of the following month. Finally, if the birthday is between the 21st and the end of the month, you will receive your payment on the fourth Wednesday of the following month.

Social Security does not make partial-month payments. Indivduals first become eligible to receive a benefit during the month after the month of their 62nd birthday. So if a person was born in May, his or her first month of eligiblity is June. Since the Social Security Administration pays individuals a month behind, the person will receive the June benefit in July. If you would like to receive your first payment in the first month you are eligible, you will need to apply three months before your birthday.

Published October 10, 2018

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