Fresh Meadows, NY asked in Social Security for New York

Q: My husband passed away 2weeks ago : He was receiving social security benefits : Will I or our children be able to get hi

Will be able to get his last month benefits so we can use for his final expenses such as funeral costs and other expenses ?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer
  • Social Security Disability Lawyer
  • Prattville, AL

A: My condolences to you and your family. Below are the next steps to take with regard to Social Security benefits and the death of your husband.

First of all, your husband's death must be reported to the Social Security Administration (SSA). In most cases, the funeral home will report the person's death to SSA, but you can call SSA to report your husband's death or apply for benefits at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).

Since your deceased husband was receiving Social Security benefits, you must return any benefits received for the month in which he died or any later months. For example, if the person dies in April, you must return the benefit paid in May.

If you were not getting benefits on your husband's record, you should apply for survivors benefits right away - this is important because because, for some claims, SSA pays benefits from the time you apply and not from the time your husband died. If you are caring for you and your late husband's children who are younger than age 16 or disabled, you, as a widow, can get survivor's benefits at any age. Your unmarried children, younger than age 18 (or up to age 19 if they’re attending school full time), can also get survivor's benefits.

As a surviving spouse, you may also receive a special lump-sum death payment of $255.

For more information, see

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