By Lizna Odhwani Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Norfolk, Va.

During this time when our physical offices are closed to the public, you may wonder, “How can I get help from Social Security without visiting an office?”  You can find the answer at, which links you to some of our most popular online services.  You can apply for retirement and disability benefits, appeal a decision, and do much more. 

Our newest my Social Security feature, Advance Designation, enables you to identify up to three people, in priority order, who you would like to serve as your potential representative payee in the event you ever need help managing your benefits.  We have updated our Frequently Asked Questions at to answer questions you may have about Advance Designation.

You can also apply for Medicare online in less than 10 minutes with no forms to sign and often no required documentation.  We’ll process your application and contact you if we need more information.

Visit to apply for Medicare and find other important information.  If you’re eligible for Medicare at age 65, your initial enrollment period begins three months before your 65th birthday and ends three months after that birthday. 

We’ve organized our Online Services webpage into four popular categories for easy navigation: 

  • Review Your Information.  You can access your secure, personal information and earnings history to make sure everything is correct.  You can even print statements with ease.
    • Apply for Benefits.  You can apply for retirement, disability, and Medicare benefits without having to visit a field office. 
    • Manage Your Account.  You can change your direct deposit information and your address online. 
    • Find Help and Answers.  We’ve answered your most frequently asked questions, and provided links to publications and other informational websites. 

Let your family and friends know they can do much of their business with us online at  

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