About Tom Margenau

Tom Margenau

Tom Margenau

Tom Margenau worked for 32 years in a variety of positions for the Social Security Administration before retiring in 2005. For many years, he was the director of SSA's public information office at the agency’s headquarters in Baltimore, Md. In that post, he was the chief editor for more than 100 informational publications produced by SSA.

He also was SSA’s deputy press officer for several years, serving in that position as a chief spokesman for the Social Security Administration. Prior to that, he was a speechwriter for the Commissioner of Social Security. Before he moved to SSA's headquarters, he worked for 12 years in Social Security field offices around the country, where he processed Social Security claims while writing Social Security columns for local newspapers.

He has written the “Social Security and You ” column for national syndication since 1997. Margenau graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1971. He is married and has two grown children and five grandchildren.

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Widows Must Sign Up for Benefits in Person Jul 11, 2018

Q: I think you made an error in a recent column. You said anyone can file for Social Security benefits online. But when I tried to file for widow's benefits online, I learned that I could not do that. Were you wrong? A: Yes, I was. I checked, and sur... Read More

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A Mixed Bag Jul 04, 2018

Usually, I like to focus my column around one topic. But today I'll just open up my email inbox and pull out a hodgepodge of questions. Q: I am 64 years old. I plan to start my Social Security at age 66. My husband is 62 and has been getting Social S... Read More

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One Crazy Email Misleads Many Jun 27, 2018

We all know that the internet can be a force for good — spreading knowledge and education to people around the world. But sadly, it also can be an instrument of insanity — a tool that can be corrupted by con artists to spread lies and hal... Read More