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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Spousal Benefits: What You Can and Cannot Do Apr 21, 2021

Before I even start, I'm going to address the gender issue. This column is about benefits available to spouses. However, I don't want to spend the whole column trying to be gender-neutral and using awkward combined pronouns like "he/she" or "him/her,... Read More

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The 3 Rules About Social Security Checks Everyone Should Know Apr 14, 2021

There are some basic facts about when and how Social Security checks are due and delivered that confuse many people. To help you understand, here are three rules about getting Social Security checks that everyone needs to know. No. 1: Social Security... Read More

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The Good Old Days of Social Security Apr 07, 2021

I've been writing a book for years now. It's not going to be a bestseller, and it only has to do with Social Security in a peripheral way. It's a history of my life, my wife's life and our lives together (about 47 years so far). I'm writing this coll... Read More

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Social Security Disability: The Program Everyone Loves To Hate Mar 31, 2021

I was heading into a local grocery store the other day, and I noticed a few people gathered around a car parked in one of the spots reserved for people with disabilities. I heard someone yelling. As I got closer to the car, I saw an old guy ranting a... Read More