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Surviving Spouse & Children
FSM Social Security Survivors' benefits are benefits that can be paid to the family of a deceased worker. Survivor's benefits can ease the financial burden that sometimes follows a worker's death by providing the family with continuing cash income. It is an income that may mean the family can stay together, that children can stay together, that children will be able to continue their education, that permanently disabled children can receive a lifetime income.
Who is eligible for this type of benefit?
What is fully and currently insured?
What is the amount of the benefit for spouse and child(ren)?
The surviving spouse of a fully insured worker eligible shall be paid a monthly benefit or disability in an amount equal to sixty percent (60%) of the retirement or disability insurance benefit calculated for the deceased spouse at the date of death while each surviving child shall be entitled to fifteen percent (15%). If the surviving spouse is receiving his or her share, the children (3 or more) together shall be entitled to forty percent (40%). The only time when the children can receive hundred percent (100%) of the deceased wage earner's retirement is if the surviving spouse is either deceased or parents are divorce and no payment was ever made to a surviving spouse. When this happens, each child will be entitled to 15% up to the maximum of 7 children or 100% of the deceased wage earner's retirement benefits.
The total survivor's benefit paid to the spouse and the children may not exceed the retirement benefit calculated for the decedent as of the date of death, except that if the surviving spouse receives benefits based on his or her own employment coverage, that amount plus the survivors' benefits for the children may exceed the amount of the deceased retirement benefit. In no event shall the amount paid be less than the minimum established by Social Security Administration.
The surviving spouse of an individual who died fully insured, if such spouse has filed application, shall be entitled to a survivor insurance benefit for each month beginning with the month of death of the fully insured spouse and ending with the month preceding the month in which the surviving spouse dies or remarries; provided that such benefit shall be subject to the earning test.
If the spouse of the deceased insured worker is eligible for retirement or disability benefits based on his or her own employment coverage, and is also eligible for surviving spouse benefits, the spouse shall receive whatever benefit pays the largest monthly payment. The surviving spouse cannot receive both benefits.
Children eligible for benefits shall include only the deceased individual's biological children and such adopted children whose confirmed petition for adoption by the wage earner has been presented to the Social Security Administration. Every surviving child who fulfills the foregoing and who is dependent upon an individual entitled to old age benefits who was dependent upon an individual who died fully insured or currently insured, shall be entitled, upon filing application, to a child's insurance benefit for each month beginning with the month of death of such individual and ending with the month preceding whichever of the following first occurs:
A child shall be deemed dependent upon his or her parent or adopting parent unless such individual was not living in the same household with or contributing to the support of the child. Child's insurance benefits shall be paid to the individual upon whom the child is currently dependent, except such benefit shall be subject to the earning test.
What are the documents required when applying?
Surviving Spouse proof of marriage:
Proof of child(ren)'s relationship to the deceased:
You should notify Social Security immediately if any of the following occurs:
If you require additional information regarding the survivor's application process, please contact your nearest FSMSS Branch Offices.