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Guest oneoftwo

Social Security Benefits

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Guest oneoftwo

Please contact your own country/locality social benefit office as soon as you can and make an appointment to discuss anything that will apply to you.

 

Also make sure you understand when you need to contact them when things change, such as:

your kids reach age 18

you get remarried

 

there are many more

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I was told I literally had a week to contact them. The bad part is it can take months for them to get you an appointment.

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I don't know if state to state is different but I didn't call SS for about 3 or 4 months after my husband passed and was not in a hurry to go in. I just did it so my sister in law would stop hounding me. It wasn't until 6 months after he passed that I went in  to take care of it. A week sounds ridiculous. I would call and talk to them.

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One reason I am told why it is important to go sooner is that they may not pay benefit retroactively. In many cases, benefits start on the day you apply so if you wait 6 months, you may have denied yourself or children six months of benefits. With that said, I have still not gone to see them personally because emotionally I am still a wreck.

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I live in Ohio so it may be different but I went in 6 months later. In one month I received the back pay and the following month the regular scheduled payments started. I understand about not going in. I wasn't going to go in but I am glad I did. My husband didn't have life insurance so the monthly payments help.

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As my daughter was over 18 I was not able to get benefits for her.  So at that time I could only receive the $255.  Which to me is a joke.  I was widowed at age 51.  My husband had life insurance but because I could NOT find a job (so many thousands and thousands of people lost their jobs too; the recession), the insurance $$$$ went fast.  Thank God my house was paid off.  A widow friend of mine told me I could collect widow benefits at age 60.  However, I could NOT be remarried before that time.  That 8+ years was pure hell for me.  A year and a half after he passed I was in a near fatal car accident with a drunk driver.  A month later I lost my job with bennies.  Since then I've had to purchase my own health insurance including COBRA.  No choice at that time.  I applied for widow benefits one month before my 60th birthday.  Got an appointment in a few days.  I was given all my options; collect on my own or my husbands.  NOT both.  Because my late husband made more I am collecting on his.  I was also told I could work and make up to almost $16K before the SS would be deducted.  Luckily, I found a part-time job that pays pretty good (at least helps with the bills) over 2 years ago.  However, I still have to pay for my own health insurance.  Helps to work for an insurance agent.  In the last few years I've learned how I can live without things I had when my husband was still alive.  Amazingly, I found that I don't miss those things that I thought I really needed. 

 

Now I am looking at retiring, selling my home, buying a truck so pull the RV behind.  I'm sure if my husband was here he would have said NO WAY!!!!!!

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I went into SS about a month after he died.. the death cert took a bit... but I received back pay up until the day he died.. I literally received my first payment the next day by direct deposit!! I didn't have an appt, but was lucky to have a claims employee there to help! If they weren't there, I would've had to come back after waiting an hour... my experience with SS was very good... and I get benefits until my children graduate, not until they are 18...

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please forgive me if I sound clueless but I did not know to go to SS office. My spouse and I did not receive any benefits prior to death. I was let go from my position when my spouse passed and have not worked for 6 months. Is going to SS office something I should do?

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Hi @Lanajoy -

You can always schedule an appointment to speak with an agent at the Social Security office, bring the death certificate and both of your social security numbers, and have them advise you if you have any benefits earned. It doesn't hurt to ask - worse case you are right where you are now; best case perhaps you have some additional income coming your way...but if you don't find out based on your personal details and situation, you won't know for sure.

Best wishes to you.

If you decide to follow-up, let us know how you made out.

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I was told I literally had a week to contact them.

 

Ugh - once again, BS advice to you Angelalpn from a person that doesn't know. Get an appointment when you can and go.

 

Also, your state of residence has no bearing on your SS benefits. It is a Federal program - your state doesn't get involved.

 

As others have said, get with a SS agent and see what, if any, benefits you are eligible for.

 

Good luck - Mike

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I may be recalling this incorrectly because that time frame is a blur, but I am 99.99% sure I never went in to a physical SS office; everything was done by phone during a pre-arranged time and I believe I had to mail documents in. It could have been the mortuary that sent in the paperwork. My husband was on disability prior to his death, which was also conducted by phone.

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My understanding is that regardless of your age or circumstance you are owed a one time (nominal) amount from S.S. I believe you do need to go to the office to claim it. If you do not have dependents the ability to receive your spouse's benefits is dependent upon your age. Of course your own benefits might be higher than your spouse's. If you call Social Security (and prepare to wait on hold) you can determine the amounts of money and at what age you should collect.

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A lot can also be discussed with  Social Security on the phone before heading out to the SS office.  I recall I had very good results by phone- surprisingly!

 

In my case, I am collecting now my husband's Social Security benefits.  I plan to do that till I am 70.  When I turn 70, I will collect on my own SS account which will be a higher benefit.  Unfortunately, one can't receive both the spouse benefit and my own.  Just one.  Recently Social Security changed some of their benefit plans according to one's birth year.

 

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I called social security to get benefits for my daughter. She was 17 when my husband died. I was 18 when my own father died in 1975 and I got benefits until I graduated from college. The laws about college aged students changed during the first Bush administration but the lady from social security arranged for benefits for my daughter until she graduated from high school. While I was on the phone with social security she arranged for the 255.00 death benefit also. And then she asked me how my husband died. I explained he had cancer and she asked me if he had continued to work through his treatment. He had not...and during that time I never could motivate him to apply for disability. The lady from social security explained that these benefits were still available to me. The amount I got were calculated from six months after he quit working until he died...which was 9 months worth of benefits. It was a nice check that sustained me for quite awhile.

 

People above are right...you are due widow's benefits (your husband's social security benefits) at 60 unless you remarry before age 60.

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My husband and I were only married for 2 months when he passed away, so I don't qualify for the death payment or survivor's benefits. If I'd qualified, I could have collected them now, even though I'm only 51, because I'm disabled.

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