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Stop, Look & Listen: Railroad Retirement Benefits Q&A

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Transferring Railroad Credits to Social Security

(Posted December 5, 2003)

Question 344: I worked for the railroad from 1965 to 1973 (8 years). When I left, I was told that my retirement money was transferred to Social Security. At that time,the SSA told me that when I retire they would credit me with those 8 years of railroad service. But recently an SSA representative says no. Why won't Social Security honor those 8 years?

Answer: What the Social Security Administration repersentative told you was not correct. They routinely ask all Social Security applicants whether they have ever worked for a railroad, and whether they are vested for Railroad Retirement benefits. Depending on the answers, SSA automatically will request the Railroad Retirement Board to transfer all of the worker's railroad credits to SSA so that they will be included in the calculation of SSA benefits.

You should ask to talk to the manager of the Social Security office. He or she should know how to handle your situation. If you don't get satisfaction, then you should contact the Railroad Retirement office for your area and ask them to contact SSA on your behalf to straighten them out.

If all else fails, then contact the local office of your U.S. representatives or senators and ask for their assistance.

Important notice:

Answers are provided as general guidance on the subjects covered in the question and are not provided as legal advice to the questioner or to readers. Any legal issues should be reviewed by your legal counsel to apply the law to the particular facts of this and similar situations.

The law in this area changes frequently. Answers are believed to be correct as of the posting dates shown. The completeness or accuracy of a particular answer may be affected by changes in the law (statutes, regulations, rulings, court decisions, etc.) that occur after the date on which a particular Q&A is posted.

Copyright 1997-2017 Robert S. Kaufman
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