Our Lifetime Commitment to You and Yours

" "Social Security is here with information, tools, and benefits to help you secure today and tomorrow. Our journey together begins when you’re born and get your Social Security card. It continues when you get your first job and follows you through your entire career, marriage, and retirement. Our commitment is to be with you throughout life’s journey.

Our promise extends to surviving family members when a worker dies.

Some of the Social Security taxes you pay go toward survivors benefits for your family. In the event of your death, certain members of your family may be eligible for survivors benefits; these include widows and widowers, divorced widows and widowers, children, and dependent parents.

The amount of benefits your survivors receive depends on your lifetime earnings. The higher your earnings are, the higher their benefits will be. The value of your survivors benefit may be more than the value of your individual life insurance.

By making sure your earnings are posting correctly, you are passing down protections to your survivors, just as your parents did before you. You can do this by:

  • Creating a personal my Social Security account. Your my Social Security account is secure and gives you immediate access to your earnings records, Social Security benefit estimates, and a printable Social Security Statement.
  • Visiting our Benefits Planner for Survivors to help you better understand your and your family’s Social Security protection as you plan for your financial future.
  • Checking your Social Security Statement to see an estimate of survivors benefits we could pay your family. It also shows an estimate of your retirement and disability benefits and provides other important information.

For more information, please visit our website or read our publication Survivors Benefits. You can also help us spread the word by sharing this information with your family and friends.


105 thoughts on “Our Lifetime Commitment to You and Yours

  1. I collect widow’s benefits, I’m 65 yrs old and do I need to let SSI know I’m still alive each year. Is there a form I need to prove I’m still living and collect my SSI.?

  2. My husband passed away 2.5 years ago, he was collecting social security. I am currently working and just turned 64. Can I retire at 65 and collect my husbands benefits till my social security is at 100% and then collect my benefits?

    • Hi Nadia, thanks for using our blog. If you are the widow of a person who worked long enough under Social Security, you can receive full benefits at full retirement age for survivors or reduced benefits as early as age 60. If you qualify for retirement benefits on your own record, you can switch to your own retirement benefit as early as age 62 or as late as age 70.

      Check out our Survivors Planner web page for additional details.

  3. I am 59yrs old husband passed 8 yrs ago and I received the 255.00 for his death. I became disabled with discs back, neck and now thumbs with carpal tunnel/ arthritis. I just after 5 yrs of applying and denied am receiving SSI. I have a case pending waiting for AJ date not sure what for. But can I get my late husband social security (he fully retired 1 yrs before his death) survivors benifits? I’m so confused on all this and only receive $574.00 from ssi. Please understand I am very grateful to receive that.

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