Congressional budget cuts are forcing the Social Security Administration to reduce its public hours. Beginning August 15, 2011, Social Security field offices across the country will close to the public 30 minutes early each day. The hours will vary across the board, but if a field office is normally open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., it will now close daily at 3:30 p.m., according to a news release from the agency.
This will allow the agency to avoid paying its employees overtime.
“While agency employees will continue to work their regular hours, this shorter public window will allow us to complete face-to-face service with the visiting public without incurring the cost of overtime for our employees,” said Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security. “Congress provided our agency with nearly $1 billion less than the President requested for our budget this fiscal year, which makes it impossible for us to provide the amount of overtime needed to handle service to the public as we have in the past.”
The agency points out that most beneficiaries do not need to visit a field office, as most services can be accomplished at www.socialsecurity.gov—including applying for benefits, signing up for a direct deposit, replacing a Medicare card, etc.
Do you think that the Social Security Administration’s reduced public hours will impede customer service or efficiency?
If you need help with your Social Security Disability benefits, contact the Social Security Disability lawyers at Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin.
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