Social Security: Plan your future during Financial Literacy Month | Lifestyles

Financial Literacy Month aims to raise awareness of the importance of planning for a secure financial future. Every April, we like to remind you that Social Security is an essential part of any financial plan. We have online tools to help you understand your potential Social Security benefits and how they fit into your financial future.

You should periodically review your Social Security statement using your personal My Social Security account at www.ssa.gov/myaccount. Your statement is an easy-to-read summary of the estimated benefits you and your family may receive, including potential retirement, disability and survivor benefits.

Our Retirement Provision tool in your personal my Social Security account allows you to consult different scenarios for estimating benefits. You can compare the effect of different start dates of future income and retirement benefits on the amount of your future benefits.

Please let your friends and family know that they can take steps to improve their financial knowledge by logging into their Secure My Social Security account. If they don’t have an account, they can easily create one at www.ssa.gov/myaccount.

Q: Who can get additional help with Medicare prescription drug coverage?

A: Anyone with Medicare is eligible for Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. Enrollment in a Medicare drug plan is voluntary, and you pay an additional monthly premium for coverage. People with higher incomes might pay a higher premium.

If you have limited income and resources, you may be eligible for additional help with the costs — monthly premiums, annual deductibles, and prescription copayments — associated with a Medicare prescription drug plan. To qualify for additional assistance, you must reside in one of the 50 states or the District of Columbia. For 2022, your resources must be limited to $15,510 (or $30,950 if you are married and living with your spouse). Resources include things like bank accounts, stocks, and bonds. We do not count your house and car as resources. Your annual income must be limited to $20,385 (or $27,465 if you are married and living with your spouse).

Even if your annual income is higher, you can still get help. Learn more about www.ssa.gov/benefits/medicare/prescriptionhelp.html

Q: I have just retired and am approaching the age where I can start receiving Medicare. What is the monthly premium for Medicare Part B?

A: In 2022, the standard Medicare Part B premium for medical insurance is currently $170.10 per month. Some people with higher incomes have to pay a higher monthly premium for their Medicare coverage. You can get details about www.medicare.gov or by calling 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) (TTY 1-877-486-2048).

This column was prepared by the Social Security Administration. For quick answers to specific Social Security questions, contact Social Security toll-free at 800-772-1213 or visit www.socialsecurity.gov.

Sarah J. Greer