This is not a very popular subject, but it is one that is important to the recipients of SSA disability benefits, their spouses and children.
When you pass away, your SSA disability benefits will be terminated. You should tell your significant others that they need to contact the SSA immediately so that your account won’t continue to receive benefits that you are no longer entitled to.
Failure to do so could possibly result in criminal charges.
When the last check comes in depends on our specific date of death. If you die before your check’s usual “issuance” date, your account will not receive another check. If afterward, then you may still have another check coming in. This is because, typically, the SSA issues checks for the previous month the following month.
With that being said, it does not necessarily mean that your significant others are not entitled to ongoing benefits based upon your record.
Your surviving spouse or ex-spouse may be entitled to Widowers Benefits. There are two types of these, one if they are not disabled, and one if they are disabled.
According to the SSA’s website, if they are not disabled, they may receive full benefits at full retirement age for survivors or reduced benefits as early as age 60.
If they are disabled, also according to the SSA’s website there are certain benchmarks they will have to meet, namely that they are between the ages of 50 and 60, that their condition meets the definition of disability for adults and that their disability started before or within seven years of the worker’s death.
Your children may also be entitled to Survivors Benefits. According to the SSA, they may be eligible if they are unmarried and under 18 (19 if attending elementary or secondary school full time). Moreover, they may receive benefits if they were disabled before 22 and have continued to be so.
James Ezzell is an attorney at the Bond & Botes Law Offices in Huntsville, Alabama. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Alabama, and a Juris Doctorate from the Mississippi College School of Law. James prides himself in working and winning SSA Disability cases for people truly in need of his help. Read his full bio here.