That is what occurs to social safety contributions if you die

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When handling the financial affairs of a deceased elderly person, you may be wondering how the government knows they are no longer making Social Security payments.

Or maybe there is a surviving spouse or dependent who is hoping these benefits can continue.

Although social security rules can be complicated, the bottom line ends with a person’s benefits ending in death. And whether you qualify for survivors depends on several factors.

Here’s what you should know.

Where to start

It is important that the social security authority be notified as soon as possible after the person dies.

In most cases, funeral homes will notify the government. There is a form these companies use to report death.

“The person who serves as the executor [of the estate] or the surviving spouse can call Social Security as well, “said Peggy Sherman, certified financial planner, senior advisor at Briaud Financial Advisors in College Station, Texas.

Whoever makes the report should be armed with the deceased’s social security number.

When payments stop

Note that a person will not receive any social security benefits for the month of their death.

“Any benefit paid after the month the person died must be refunded,” Sherman said.

In the case of social security, each payment received corresponds to the previous month’s benefits. So if a person dies in August, the check for that month – which will be paid in September – must be returned when it is received.

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If payment is made by bank transfer, the bank holding the account should be notified so that it can reimburse services that should not have been delivered.

It may come as no surprise that using someone else’s services after their death is a federal crime, whether or not the death has been reported.

If the SSA receives a message that there may be a fraud, the allegation will be reviewed and may warrant a criminal investigation. To combat ambiguity, the agency crosses records with other government agencies to identify unreported deaths.

Survivor benefits

If a spouse or eligible relative has already received money based on the deceased’s records, the benefit will automatically be converted into survivor benefits when the government learns of the death, Sherman said.

“In all other cases, the surviving spouse must call Social Security and make an appointment to claim survivor benefits,” Sherman said. “You can’t do this online.”

When the widow or widower reaches their own full retirement age, they can receive their deceased spouse’s full benefit, Sherman said. You can apply for a reduced benefit from the age of 60 (in the case of disability, generally from the age of 50), in contrast to the normal earliest age of 62 years.

If the surviving dependents say they are entitled to social security, they can switch to their own benefits at any time between the ages of 62 and 70 if this payment were higher.

A former spouse of the testator can also claim benefits, provided that he meets certain requirements.

Benefits can also be claimed for underage children of a deceased person, as well as for a surviving spouse who takes care of the children.

Finally, on the death of a Social Security beneficiary, the surviving spouse (or child) typically receives a lump sum of $ 255.

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