- Written by John Johnston John Johnston
Andrew Saul, commissioner of Social Security, reminds the public that Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit payments will continue to be paid on time during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The agency also reminds everyone to be aware of scammers who try to take advantage of the pandemic to trick people into providing personal information or payment via retail gift cards, wire transfers, internet currency, or by mailing cash to maintain Social Security benefit payments or receive economic impact payments from the Department of the Treasury.
“Social Security will pay monthly benefits on time, and these payments will not be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Saul said.
“I want our beneficiaries to be aware that scammers may try to trick you into thinking the pandemic is stopping or somehow changing your Social Security payments, but that is not true. Don’t be fooled.”
The Department of the Treasury, not Social Security, has been making direct payments to eligible people as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES Act.
Please do not call Social Security about these payments as the agency does not have information to share.
The agency continues to direct the public to its online self-service options whenever possible. Local offices are closed to the public but are available by phone. People can find their local field office phone number by accessing the Field Office Locator at secure.ssa.gov/ICON/main.jsp.
To allow available agents to provide better phone coverage, the agency has temporarily changed its national 800 number hours to 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. local time.
The agency is experiencing longer than normal wait times on the 800 number and asks the public to remain patient, use its online services at www.socialsecurity.gov, or call their local office.
Please visit the agency’s COVID-19 webpage at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus for important information and updates.
John Johnston is a Social Security public affairs specialist.