Fixing a Social Security earnings mistake

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in Small Business Tax

Q: The "estimate of earnings" I recently received from the Social Security Administration showed that I had no income in a year I actually earned more than $100,000. I'm age 61. Is it worth going through the hassle to change this? And, if so, how do I do it? H.S., Wichita, Kan.

A: Yes. Your earnings amount could affect your retirement benefits. To make the change, contact your local Social Security Administration (SSA) office or call the SSA at its toll-free number (800) 772-1213. If the error occurred more than three years ago, you may not be able to rectify it. Tip: SSA sends out personal earnings statements to all employees over age 25 who have paid Social Security tax. If you haven't received one or you've misplaced it, file SSA Form 7704.

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