SSA site links seniors to benefits

The Social Security Administration will inaugurate a Web service Thursday

that will enable seniors to file for retirement benefits online.

The Internet retirement benefits application is the latest in a series

of Social Security initiatives to meet the growing demand for online services

from SSA.

The newest product will enable seniors to fill out applications via

online forms at www.ssa.gov. In the past, retirees had to visit their local

SSA office or fill out a form on paper and mail it.

"Social Security is committed to expanding electronic services to its

customers," said William Halter, deputy commissioner of Social Security

for electronic services.

The SSA also is experimenting with an instant messenger service and

voice-over-Internet capacity. Both are being tested in pilot projects and

will be introduced to the general public in the coming year.

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