When a disabled person who was receiving Social Security Disability benefits passes away, then his or her dependents can avail of the benefits after his or her death. These benefits are known as Social Security Disability Survivor Benefits, or simply, Survivor Benefits. Survivor Benefits are only given out to Social Security Disability Insurance holders as they had a sufficient work history. This benefit cannot be availed by SSI (Supplemental Security Income) recipients.


Who is classified as a dependent for Social Security Disability Survivor Benefits?

Survivor benefits are paid out only after the Social Security Administration verifies that the person in question is eligible for those benefits. Here is a list of relatives who could be eligible for Survivor Benefits. Also detailed are the criteria for eligibility for Social Security Disability Survivor Benefits:


1 – Spouse (Widow/Widower)

If your spouse was current on his or her Social Security Disability Insurance at the time of his or her death, then you, as the spouse, may be eligible for Survivor Benefits. There are multiple categories of eligibility and, depending on which you qualify for, you will receive a certain percentage of your deceased spouse’s Disability benefits.

However, there are a few more conditions that need to be kept in mind for eligibility for Social Security Disability Survivor Benefits as a spouse:

  • If you remarried before you turned 60, then you are no longer eligible for survivor benefits. If you remarried after 60, or after 50 if you are disabled, you are eligible for SSID Survivor Benefits.


  • If you are already receiving SSID benefits of your own, then you can choose the one with the higher amount (yours or your spouse’s). As long as you meet the other criteria listed.


  • If you are working, then your Social Security Disabled Survivor’s Benefit may have a lower payout, based on how much you earn and your age.


  • You need to have been married for at least 9 months to qualify for SSID Survivor’s Benefits. However, there are exceptions to the rule.


2 – Children of the deceased


-Children: If your parent died and was receiving Social Security Disability benefits, or was insured for SSID, then you would be eligible for 75% of that amount as Survivor benefit. To qualify, you need to be under 16 and unmarried. You will receive the Survivor benefit till one month before your 18th

-Adult Children: If you are 18 or older, you can receive up to 75% of Survivor benefits if you meet all the requirements.


5 – Grandchildren: eligible grandchildren will receive 75% of their grandparent’s SSID benefit up to a month before their 18th


6 – Elderly Parents: If both elderly parents are alive and meet the eligibility criteria, then each is entitled to 75% of the deceased’s Social Security Disability Benefit. However, if only one parent is alive, then that person will get 82.5% of the SSID Benefit.


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