According to a recent press release from the Social Security Administration:
“Effective November 19, 2012, Social Security field offices nationwide will close to the public 30 minutes early each day.** For example, a field office that is usually open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. will close daily at 3:00 p.m. In addition, beginning January 2, 2013, offices will close to the public at noon every Wednesday.
While agency employees will continue to work their regular hours, this shorter public window will allow them to complete face-to-face interviews and process claims work without incurring the cost of overtime. The significantly reduced funding provided by Congress under the continuing resolution for the first six months of the fiscal year makes it impossible for the agency to provide the overtime needed to handle service to the public as it has done in the past.”
The release went on to say “Most Social Security services do not require a visit to a local office. Many services, including applying for retirement, disability or Medicare benefits, signing up for direct deposit, replacing a Medicare card, obtaining a proof of income letter or informing us of a change of address or telephone number are conveniently available at www.socialsecurity.gov or by dialing our toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213. People who are deaf or hard of hearing may call our TTY number, 1-800-325-0778. Many of our online services also are available in Spanish at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/espanol/.”