Social Security benefits are paid each month for the previous month and issued by the Treasury Department. Payments are deposited electronically for people who applied after May 1, 2011. The Social Security office advises everyone to sign up for electronic deposit. You must switch to electronic deposit by March 1, 2013. At that time, all recipients who did not switch will receive their benefits via the Direct Express Card Program. With the Direct Express Card program, the payments are made directly to the card account and the card can be used anywhere a debit card is accepted.
For people who filed for Social Security Retirement or Disability before May 1, 1997 the payment date is usually the third day of the month following the month payment is due. For example: Payments for January are delivered on February 3rd. Payments for March are delivered in April 3rd. If the third day of the month is a Saturday, Sunday or holiday, then payments are processed on the preceding Friday.
For people who filed after May 1, 1997, the most obvious way to find the date is to review the award notice. The notice will tell you when you can expect to receive your Social Security payment.
If you do not have an award notice, then to determine the Social Security Retirement or Social Security Disability pay date filed after May 1, 1997 simply look at the birth date of whose record is are receiving benefits from. If the day of the month is between the 1st and 10th then the benefits are paid on the second Wednesday of each month. If the day of the month is between the 11th and 20th then the benefits are paid on the third Wednesday of each month. If the day of the month is between the 21st and 31st then the benefits are paid on the fourth Wednesday of each month. If the payment date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday then payments are processed on the preceding Friday.
For example: Joan is drawing Social Security from her deceased husband’s record. His birthday is January 28, 1932. Since his birth is on the 28th day of the month then benefits will be paid the fourth Wednesday of each month.
If Joan is drawing Social Security from her own record then she would use the day of the month from her birthday to determine when benefits will be paid.
Some people will have payments on the third of each month even if they filed after May 1, 1997. This date is reserved for people where a beneficiary also receives SSI payments, is a beneficiary whose income is deemed to be an SSI recipient, someone who has Medicare premiums paid by the state, someone who lives in a foreign country or has a garnishment, tax levy or other payments made through the critical payment system.
Payments on the first of each month are generally reserved for SSI payments.