The Social Security index of documentation maintained by the relevant government agency, that of the U.S. Social Security Administration, represents an immense collection of information on citizens and residents of the United States. Social Security records are maintained for the ultimate purpose of providing the various benefits to which persons have a right under the laws of the country, such as, most commonly, those of retirement benefits, but in the shorter term also allow for the taxation of people in order to financially support the U.S. social security system.
Despite the wide ranging nature of Social Security records, these are not, for the most part, made available for the direct use by U.S. residents. Instead, information from the Social Security index, as would be one of the millions of Americans accordingly placed within it, can be made permissibly available to another U.S. resident or citizen based on at least one of two conditions being present.
In this regard, Social Security records can be provided to people based either on the individual thus inquired after having died, or if the subject of the Social Security Records has signed a release form for the person making the query. In order to take advantage of this route for access into the Social Security index, the applicant must also pay a specified fee. In any case, accessing Social Security records will require knowledge of the name of the person thus referred to in documentation, and might be aided by additional knowledge as to that person’s Social Security Number (SSN).