SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS FOR SURVIVORSJun 23rd, 2013 | By Sharon Shaw Elrod MSW EdD | Category: Social Security & Medicare
So how does this work?
- If a surviving widow waits until full retirement age, she can get 100 percent of her deceased husband’s Social Security benefit. Full retirement age is 66 for people born between 1943 and 1954; it is 67 for those born in 1960 and later.
- Reduced benefits are available at age 60; if disabled, benefits are available at age 50.
- Benefits are available for widows taking care of the deceased one’s children; benefits are also available for children younger than 16 or disabled.
- Under specified circumstances, step-children and adopted children may receive benefits.
All of these benefits are available for widowers as well.
The Social Security Safety Net
One of the reasons seniors across the country are against changes to Social Security is because, in many cases, it offers a safety net for their children in the event they are unable to care for them because of early death. A lot of seniors simply do not have the resources to leave an inheritance for their children and grandchildren. If an early death occurs, spouses, children and grandchildren may be eligible for Social Security benefits to keep them out of poverty.
The Social Security website offers all the information you need to have to be aware of benefits for which you or your loved ones may be eligible.