SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS
You should contact the Social Security Office to find out what benefits are available for your individual circumstances, to change records and to stop automatic deposits. Their national number is 1-800-772-1213 or visit the local office at:
2630 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SW Atlanta, Ga. 30311 Phone: (404) 691-8898
How Social Security Helps Families
Social Security survivors’ benefits help ease the financial burden that follows a worker’s death. Almost all children under age of 18 will get monthly benefits if a working parent dies. Other family members may be eligible for benefits, too. Anyone who has worked and paid Social Security (FICA) taxes has been earning Social Security benefits for his or her family. The amount of work needed to pay survivors’ benefits depends on the worker’s age at the time of death. It may be as little as 1-1/2 years for a young worker. No one needs more than 10 years.
Who Can Get Survivors' Benefits?
- Widows and widowers age 60 or older.
- Widows & widowers at any age if caring for the deceased’s child(ren) who are under age 16 or disabled.
- Divorced wives and husbands age 60 or older, if married to the deceased 10 years or more.
- Widows, widowers, divorced wives and divorced husbands age 50 or older, if they are disabled.
- Children up to age 18.
- Children age 10-19, if they attend elementary school or high school full-time.
- Children over age 18, if they became disabled before age 22.
- The deceased worker’s parents age 62 or older, if they were being supperted by the worker.
How To Apply For Benefits
You can apply for benefits by telephone or by going to any Social Security office. You may need some of the documents shown on the list below. But don’t delay your application because you don’t have all the information. if you don’t have a document you need, the Social Security office can help you get it.
- Your Social Security number and the deceased worker’s Social Security number.
- A death certificate. (Generally, the funeral director provides a statement that can be used for this purpose.)
- Proof of the deceased worker’s earnings for last year (W-2 forms of self-employment tax return).
- Your birth certificate.
- A marriage certificate, if you are applying for benefits as a widow, widower, divorced wife, or divorced husband.
- A divorce decree, if you are applying for benefits as a divorced wife or husband.
- Children’s birth certificates and Social security numbers, if applying for children’s benefits.
- Your checking or savings account information, if you want direct deposir of your benefits.
You will need to submit original documents or copies certified by the issuing office. You can mail or bring them to the office. Social Security will make photocopies and return your documents.