Few government agencies touch the lives of as many people as we do. We administer three programs under the Social Security Act:
- Old-Age and Survivors Insurance: Created in 1935, the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) program provides retirement and survivors benefits to qualified workers and their family members.
- Disability Insurance: Established in 1956, the Disability Insurance (DI) program provides benefits for workers who become disabled and their families.
- Supplemental Security Income: Established in 1972, the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program provides financial support to aged, blind, and disabled adults and children who have limited income and resources.
In addition, we support national programs administered by other Federal and State agencies, as required by law, such as Medicare, Employees Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, Coal Act, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly Food Stamps), Help America Vote Act, State Children’s Health Insurance Program, E-Verify, Medicaid, and Federal Benefits for Veterans.
We administer our programs in accordance with law, regulation, and our program policy. We have implemented enterprise risk management processes to improve the effectiveness of our organization. Our goals are informed by both the strategic opportunities ahead as well as our management of risks that threaten our core mission activities.
Approximately 62,000 Federal employees and 15,000 State employees serve the public from a network of offices across the country and around the world. Most of our employees serve the public directly or provide support to employees who do.
We administer our programs and services through a network of more than 1,200 field offices. Each day, approximately 170,000 people visit and 250,000 call one of our field offices nationwide for various reasons such as to file claims, ask questions, or update their information.
Our National 800 Number handles over 30 million calls each year. Callers can conduct various business transactions by speaking directly with a customer service representative or through our 24-hour automated services, which include requesting benefit verification letters, ordering replacement Medicare cards, and obtaining claim status updates.
Our processing centers (PC) handle complex Social Security retirement, survivors, and disability claims, as well as provide support to our National 800 Number. State agencies make disability determinations for initial claims, reconsiderations, and continuing disability reviews. Administrative law judges (ALJ) in our hearings offices and administrative appeals judges in our appeals council decide appealed cases.
For more information about our organization and its functions, visit our organizational structure webpage here.