It’s a little too soon for many of us Gen Xers to be receiving Social Security income at this point in our lives.

However, if you’re like me, you may have wondered why it is that some family members receive their Social Security payments at different times than others.

I stumbled on to the answer on the Social Security website. It turns out, the date of payment all depends on date of birth.

Here’s how it works

In general, here’s how the Social Security Administration assigns payment dates:

  • If you were born on the 1st through the 10th of the month, you’ll be paid on the second Wednesday of the month
  • If you were born on the 11th through the 20th of the month, you’ll be paid on the third Wednesday of the month
  • If you were born after the 20th of the month, you’ll be paid on the fourth Wednesday of the month.

Exceptions to the Social Security payment schedule

Children and spouses who receive benefits based on someone else’s work record will be paid on the same day as the primary beneficiary.

Payments are issued on the 3rd of each month for anyone in these categories:

  • Filed for benefits before May 1, 1997
  • Also receive a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment
  • Medicare premiums are paid for by the state of residence
  • Live in a foreign country

Individuals who receive SSI payments due to disability, age, or blindness receive those payments on the 1st of each month.

If your payment date falls on a federal holiday or weekend, you can expect to receive that month’s payment on the weekday immediately prior.

Most of us in Generation X aren’t banking Social Security payments yet, but little tidbits like how payout dates are determined are good to know as we have discussions with older family members or plan for our own retirement.