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The Cousins Are Back and They're Filing Online for Social Security Benefits

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Tuesday, January 6, 2009 Mark Lassiter, Press Officer
For Immediate Release 410-965-8904


News Release

The Cousins Are Back and They're Filing Online for Social Security Benefits

Patty Duke Reprises Patty and Cathy Lane for new Retire Online Campaign

Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, and Patty Duke, Academy Award, Golden Globe and Emmy winning actress, today unveiled Social Security’s new online retirement application and launched the agency’s Retire Online campaign.  Featuring cousins Patty and Cathy Lane from the hit 1960’s sitcom, “The Patty Duke Show,” the campaign will let Americans know that it’s now easier than ever to retire online at

“Social Security’s new online retirement application can be completed in as little as 15 minutes from the comfort of your home or office,” Commissioner Astrue said.  “Filing online means there’s no need to drive to a local Social Security office or wait for an appointment with a Social Security representative.  I’m thrilled that Patty Duke has volunteered to help us promote retiring online.”

“Like millions of other baby boomers, I like to spend time with my grandchildren, travel or just relax with a good book.  And I love the convenience of doing things online,” Ms. Duke said.  “Social Security has made applying for retirement benefits online easier than ever before.  So when you decide to retire, apply online for Social Security benefits at  It’s so easy!”

To apply, go to and click on “Applying Online for Retirement Benefits.”  You will be asked a brief series of questions about you and your work.  Need to look up some information?  You don’t have to complete the application in one sitting.  You can stop and restart the application without losing any of the information entered.  Have a question?  There are convenient “more info” links that you can click on to get an answer.  And when you’re done, just click the “Sign Now” button to submit the application.  There are no paper forms to sign, and usually no additional documents are required.  If more information is needed, Social Security will contact you.

“To meet the needs of Patty and 80 million of her fellow baby boomers, who are becoming eligible for retirement at a rate of 10,000 a day for the next 20 years, Social Security is developing a wide range of online and automated services,” Commissioner Astrue said.  “In addition to our new online retirement application, and other services like our new Retirement Estimator, the highest rated online service in government, we are continuing to expand and improve our Internet service options.  These services will help us provide the American public with world-class service for generations to come.”

To see a demonstration of Social Security’s online retirement application and to view the new public service announcements featuring Patty Duke as cousins Patty and Cathy Lane, go to

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