Social Security’s Benefits for Children

Social Security is with you through life’s journey — from birth, to death, and even beyond, by helping to care for surviving dependents. Every year, about 4.4 million children receive monthly benefits because one or both of their parents are disabled, retired, or deceased. When a parent becomes disabled or dies, Social Security benefits help to stabilize the family’s financial situation in an otherwise turbulent time.

Earlier this year, National Birth Defects Prevention Month in January and National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month in March both raised awareness about medical conditions in children. Many families with children who have birth defects or developmental disabilities need medical and financial help. This is where Social Security’s commitment to helping children and families is most evident.

Social Security pays benefits through our disability insurance and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs. Our disability program provides vital income for disabled children, including people disabled since childhood. To qualify for children’s benefits under our disability program, the applicant must be the child of a parent entitled to benefits and meet Social Security’s strict definition of disability. A person is disabled under the Social Security Act if he or she can’t work due to a severe medical condition that has lasted, or is expected to last, at least one year or result in death.

The SSI program provides payments to blind or disabled children who live in households with low income and limited resources if they meet our strict definition of disability. You can find more information on eligibility requirements by visiting our website.

Our publication, Benefits for Children explains all we do to care for children. Our website is also an excellent source of information. If you think a child you know is eligible for benefits, don’t wait. Share this information and help improve the child’s quality of life today.

Facebooktwitterlinkedinmail

236 thoughts on “Social Security’s Benefits for Children

  1. I’ll believe it when I see some real action done by Congress to sure up SS in order that it will be there for everyone.

    • It can’t possibly be there for everyone… Only those who pay into the fund. It’s a retirement plan first and a Disability plan second. In order to receive a check for retirement, you must pay in 40 credits and retire at 62 to get full benefits. If a taxpayer becomes disabled before retirement than SSA does an assessment of what the individual paid into to the fund. Some people get more, others less based on FICA Taxes Paid. People who haven’t paid in at all are not entitled to get a monthly check if no taxes or not enough taxes aren’t paid in. This is why SSI was established. The money paid to unqualified disabled children and adults will receive a small monthly check to help pay expenses. They then would have to apply for State aid such as Medicaid, SNAP, and help with rent and utilities. (Gas or Electric)… maybe even a small one-time cash payout. Congress is never going to just hand those who haven’t paid their share to just collect a check just because they’re citizens. That’s where people make their mistake… during the Obama Administration, newly documented residents thought they were entitled to Social Security Disability for themselves or their children. They lined up at the Social Security Offices waiting for the free handout they thought they were entitled to, only to be told that they didn’t qualify. SSA doesn’t just give away taxpayers money like people may think.

  2. I’m on disability and I got 4 kids that doesn’t get any of my benefits but I got two kids that get disability on the own how do I go about getting them benefits to

    • Go to your local Social security in apply for them. They may even be owed back payments. They should have been getting benefits when you started getting them. Good Luck

      • These benefits aren’t free. They are paid for by Taxpayers money. My husband worked 40 years and paid in a great deal before he died… our daughter was disabled as am I and therefore we qualified to recieve his benefits. This is what we are entitled to because my husband worked hard his entire life and paid a great deal of taxes. Social Security is not a free money handout. You can’t just go in and get a free check because you have kids…If a child is severely disabled they would qualify, like my daughter. But if not, they won’t get money for being children of a disabled parent. It just doesn’t work that way. She may be able to get state aid, SNAP, Help with Rent and utilities, but unless all her kids are disabled she can’t hope for that so called free money you speak of.

  3. The person above is very angry. Still this us the best country to live in. I have a son living in central América trying to get bavk here and that government and the American easy do nothing to make it easy.
    In my opinion you need to go to college at night and maybe need learn English better and how to write articles or get your message to the right people. You need first to control your anger. There are more ways to skin a cat…

  4. These are kids that did not ask to be brought into this world. Say what you want about bad parenting. The kids are the victims of that. Rich or poor !!

    Kids deserve an education, food and shelter, I cannot begrudge them that.

  5. when are we going to get a descent raise it’s reaching a point when you go to the store to buy food the prices are up and getting higher my check doesn’t stretch far entungh into the month to make it especally the months with 5 weeks in them

  6. When will social security decide to cover children living with their grandparents when the grandparents have legal guardianship given by the state?

    Right now the parents have to be dead or the grandparents have to adopt the children. For grandparents on a fixed income and raising the grandchildren it’s hard. The parents are nevery getting back together nor can they get the kids back without a court fight.

    This is a very common issue today but another way the government refuses to keep up with the times and we have carry the burden.

      • Yet parents dont pay, worse in most cases govt does not force or enforce them to. Yet how many people go on advocating that more kids be born into this mess. They have the cart before the horse.

    • William, get with your state health and welfare. A legal guardian is not responsible for financial support in my state, my legal ward qualifies for medicaid, food stamps, day care, and cash assistance. We only need medicaid but it really helps and in an emergency the other options are there. I know this is an old post but it might help others.

      • Bob,
        Do you mind me asking what state you are in? I am in Louisiana, I have only seen where low income qualifies for our program “CCAP” Child Care Assistance Program. I am currently seeking to get guardianship of a child and I am planning on being able to keep his current Medicaid but child care would be great too!
        Thanks!

        • hi erica, if you have guardianship over any child not yours in louisiana you qualify for cash assistance called kinship. it dont matter if your low income or not. childcare medicaid and foodstamps too. go to louisiana cafe. ggogle it for the actual website address. you have to apply ne now. not in office. also medicaid is seperate from rest but can still apply from that web site. they do a phone interview with you so you dont have any office appointments to do. its worth looking into. ggood luck

  7. The Government can not cure all that ails us. But, I am glad that the safety net of Social Security is there for those who might need it.

    We need to think properly about benefits and entitlements.

    It is upon the Citizen to try to work and provide for our families during our lifetime. It is the Citizen’s work history that creates the level of benefits to which you are entitled. Calculations and formulas go into the charts that determine your benefits. Many believe that something is better than nothing. Fact is, most of the supplemental food programs are based on $1.40 per meal per person and families will run out of grocery dollars by week 3 of each month.

    Our Nation’s children are our future, they deserve our protection, and basic needs to grow into the adult Citizens of our future. It matters not their origins. What matters is our sense of empathy, understanding and actions solving their needs. Not all Parents do a great job. Not all Parents are given the time to complete their job raising these Children. I want to help, to feed, to house, to clothe, to educate, to help them become our future leaders.

    I do not feel like you are taking something away from me when you help a child.

    This is not the place for ranting selfishly. If you are distressed, then do go to your local State HHS, Community Based Services or the nearest Social Security Office to see what is available to you personally. Then get off your arm chair and start going to local City and County, counsels and commissions, attend political meetings and become a force for the future directions of this Country.

    Please use this SSA blog to learn what is available to everyone. Spread the word among family and friends to help them through hard times.

    Again, I am glad Social Security is there to help all people during unexpected hard times.

    • Great comment! Social Security doesn’t have to exist. Financial security is each of our own responsibility. The “safety net” that Social Security offers is a great benefit and so much better than nothing…

    • Yet parents dont pay, worse in most cases govt does not force or enforce them to. Yet how many people go on advocating that more kids be born into this mess. They have the cart before the horse.

  8. To whom it may concern,
    I have tried to register multiple times and the system never recognize the information I’m providing. The information is correct.
    I need assistance on this matter.
    Thanks.

    • Hello Wanda. If you are having difficulties with your personal my Social Security account, please call 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. After you hear “Briefly tell me why you are calling,” say “Help Desk” for help with a my Social Security account. Sometimes, it might be best to visit your local Social Security office for further assistance.

  9. It makes sense to me that if I, an income earning and tax paying member of society, become disabled, that SS has a program that would provide assistance to me if I become disabled. It seems strange, however, that SS provides disability payments in the name of children, who presumably earn no income nor pay any taxes. It would seem to me that any payments to the household in the name of the unfortunate child should be provide through insurance, and that most preferably, that insurance would be optional, private, and paid for by the parent. I see no interest here in the state providing payments to households in the name of disabled children.

    • The payments to disabled children (SSI) are minimal and there are strict guidelines in receiving them. These same benefits are an alternative to self employed persons who never paid in to social security or those whose disability benefit time limit has run out. You may have worked all your life but if you wait over 5 years from the time you stop working to apply for benefits you’re out of luck and will only get SSI. Likewise if you are a working parent of a child who becomes disabled you may not be able to work any longer, may not be entitled to insurance payments on a disability, may have out of pocket medical expenses that are so high you have to choose between housing and food or taking care of your child. Please don’t judge others until you’ve walked in their shoes.

      • I repeat: I see no interest here in the state providing payments to households in the name of disabled children.

        Insure your children yourself, like me, or don’t have any.

        • Private Insurance from work or otherwise doesn’t cover all that is needed for diabled children, and all your income ends up on what is needed for this child, nothing left for home or rent, griceries ect. The amout given is determined by the parents income, believe me not all get money but they do get help with medical needs and supplies. Do you think your income could cover wheel chairs, beds, physical therapy, on and on and still provide for the other children you have. What if your child had cancer,MS, CP, Cysticphibrosis, on and on many many terrible things. Could you cover child care for this disabled child so both parents can work. Not all make enough as it is. So, YES, money or any other type of help, these children are entitled.

        • Aren’t we a bit too angry, here? Particularly, over something’s for which their’s are these things sorts. And as though it’s something’s so much and as being significant as points is their’s as a matter. Think about how it should even elicit a responsiveness of reactionary disconcertingly consternations? For this but it’s worthy, to even having their’s for holding onto such things. As for a usefulness so necessary, to beginning with, anyways?

          Actually, this is an ‘insurance’ program! One for which their’s is are we all paying into. And our employers contributing, to the fullest and it’s equally as their’s to matching our own contributions. And, moreover, ones very own individual and Social Security Retirement benefits payments are their’s and being made into this system.

          The Social Security Administration chose wisely, thanks to both the U.S. Congress, and former President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s his own wisdom, for instituting such a compassionate insightfulness. For, Social Security provides services to families with invaluable benefits, whenever the severe storms of life’s unexpectedness comes upon us, or our fellow citizens. And from outside of those things and life’s usualness are norms and knowns. And but rather becomes, instead, is for certainty the unknowns. And always, the seemingly arriving from right out of the blue and upon us!

          I’m personally very thankful, both as a retired Medical Practitioner and Pulmonologist Intensivist, equally to be a their’s of the well, for these very disability benefits I am presently receiving, myself. For, I too became one of ‘those’ as well! Oneself, the whomever, just likened are their’s and so many of us are otherwise as being the having had, to becoming reliant upon SSDI (or, SSD), just like myself!

          • I am a 42 year old widow with 3 children to continue to raise and support sine the passing of my husband 6 months ago. My children qualify for SS and will collect from their fathers SS account until they graduate from high school. My husband worked for 30 years and paid into SS. Unfortunately he is never going to reap the benefit of retiring and collecting his SS himself as he is deceased. But SS has allowed me to be home for my children now. I am able to be available for my children 24/7 because of their SS income from their father. We paid into SS for a long time. We both worked our butts off and paid into SS. So those of you who think children should not receive it, think of the individuals who HAVE paid into the SS system and have families that need this when something as devastating as losing a husband and father occurs. 30 years of paying into the system ENTITLES my children the benefit of their mother to be here for them when they need me to be. Shame on those of you that suggest we pay into insurance out of pocket to support our children under devastating circumstances. I know even If I worked I could not afford to take care of my children as they need to be. SS is set up for such life changing events. Think about that.

  10. Social Security is not a retirement plan. It is however a great safety net for persons no longer able to work. It has been the sole source of income for millions of elderly Americans who have worked all their lives, many of whom served their country in one manner or another. The USA is one of the richest countries in the world and can afford to take care of its citizens in need. The bulk of complaints about the program are from people who are single minded, arrogant, and greedy.

    • Social Security is a retirement plan and is different than Social Security Disability . I collect a check every month because I am 68 and have paid into the program for over 50 years. My granddaughter gets a check since her fathers accident 15 years ago which left him mentally around 6 years old. She gets only 25.00 since the bulk goes to take care of him. So if you think the kids shouldn’t get anything shame on you. The checks stop when she turns 18.

  11. I’ve struggled with an injury since 2004, and I am currently going to a Hearing for pensions with the SSA. I loved to hear that my daughter could get help as well. Only because its hard for a single parent with a disability. And it would make her feel more reluctant and approachable to my situation.

  12. Mr. Jim Borland: The rude, vulgar, nasty, demeaning & offensive post put on by “tony seput on May 26, 2016 at 5:39 pm” (second comment above) should be removed please.

  13. I was denied on my disability…last year. I am currently receiving my pension that I have worked for over 40 years.
    I have met countless veterans that have been denied on their disability. Yet!!! The immigrants that just stepped in the used to be good old USA are receiving and enjoying my contribution and millions of veterans. I say this is absolutely BS!

  14. To whom it may concern.
    My question is if a child living with grand parents and collecting social security from grand father, because the parents a banded child and grand father passed away. The grand mother Adolph child and raised child on her own. Will child lose social security when she turns 18? or if she continu to collect, if she stays in collage to get her education can she stay on social security?
    Thank you Betty

    • Thank you for your question Betty. Normally, benefits stop when children reach age 18 unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first. At one time, SSA did pay benefits to college students, but the law changed in 1981. We now pay benefits only to students taking courses at grade 12 or below. We hope this information helps.

    • Hi Nicole, benefits issued through our Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, are based on the needs of the individual and are only paid to the qualifying person. There are no spouse’s, children’s or survivors benefits payable. In the other hand, benefits issued through our Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, in certain circumstances- are also payable to other family members, including children. Visit our “Disability Planner: Benefits for your children” page for more information. For further assistance call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks.

      • Father gets a check so the child support place say but my child cant get a check and they cant makw him pay child support amd shes foir and je has never done nothing for her …im gwtting Tanf and I have been filed for child support but the father is just now getting a check and they told me they couldnt help me anymore … what can I do so my child can get a check … I was once getting ssi and they cut it off wjwn I graduated and I appealed it and had a lawyer but she gave up on me so what do I do next

        • I’m in familiar situation, my ex is 18000 in the negative in support payments, he’s just started getting a disability check and they are withholding support payment and a
          payment towards the pastdue ,leaving him 230.00 a month, I feel its unfair to expect him to live on that a month besides ss determined,him disabled as of 2013 ,how was that past due determined if he’s been disabled and no longer working?

  15. When the child turns 18 and no longer gets benefits, does the amount the child was receiving go back to the disabled parent?

    • Thank you for your question Denise. No, the disabled beneficary’s benefit amount does not change. Workers receive Social Security retirement and disability benefits based on their covered earnings. We first establish the worker’s benefit amount and then pay benefits to certain members of the worker’s family.

  16. The major cpa firms that have had to chase after
    a senator that took military homes has not even
    been prosecuted and our employers won’t give us ourown credit cards and they give to persons of their
    community who are taking our cash and the
    money of out working colleagues and the companies
    are not paying their liabilties and the SSA is not
    paying professional people and continue to use the
    poor to hurt professional people-left ambulance driver
    on the street and refused to fund another one.

  17. I just have hopefully an easy question. I have a son and his father died before he was born, and we receive SS benefits for him that we use for him, and place some aside for him later in life… however I am in a relationship now with a man who is his “father”, (all my son has ever known) and I want to give him legal custody of my son.. can I do this without myself losing custody, or losing his SS benefit?

  18. Question? My husband passed away in November 2016. My 3 children receive SS survivor benefits monthly which maxes out the total benefit. I receive nothing from SS. I found out today that my children no longer qualify for food assistance because we are not considered over income. I wasn’t aware that a minors income from SS is considered when it comes to food and Medicaid benefits. Can someone please explain? The checks are not in my name they are in my minor children names. listing myself as guardian.
    Thank you.

  19. It is not fair that I am the LEGAL GUARDIAN of my granddaughter and I cannot get benefits for her because SSA doesn’t recognize this – even though every other fed/local agency does plus insurance companies. Why not?? The brochures infer that I can, but in reality, if my granddaughters parents are alive and incarcerated, I cannot – if I haven’t adopted her, I cannot – people need to know this because millions of people take legal custody and so there is an assumption that, as raising that child as their own LEGALLY, would get benefits. I am disabled due to stage 1V cancer, my husband died in 2015 – we were/I am legal guardian and have been since 2007 but can’t get benefits for my granddaughter – If I die from cancer – she is really out of options – how can this be? At this rate, my husband and I, who paid all our lives will have no option to get our own benefits or pass on to any qualified survivors – how can this be?

    • Thank you for your comment Kathy. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. In addition to providing for more than 50% of their support (as you may be doing now), the biological parents of the children must be deceased or disabled, or you must have legally adopted them. However, you have the right to file an application for benefits for your grandchildren and receive an official denial of your claim from Social Security, which will provide you appeals rights, if in case you wish to seek legal advice to verify our decision. For more information or to make an appointment, please call our 1-800-772-1213 toll free number. Representatives are available Monday to Friday, between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

      • I have had legal custody of my two grandchildren for 7 years and am finally in the process of adopting them but it will be months, I have asked several times to have them on my disability to no avail, but their mother is on disability so wouldn’t that qualify??

  20. how can retired legal, custodial guardians of a minor child (not kin) lobby for Child Benefits for the child until the child is 19 or no longer in high school? I am the guardian of my daughter (16 yo) and her sole support but cannot receive Child Benefits because I cannot adopt her, I am not her step-parent, and am not her biological parent. My daughter and I need to money and should be entitled to it except for a ridiculous technicality because of the title “guardian.” Thanks

    • Go through your state’s health and welfare. You can apply for benefits on your ward’s behalf and possibly get subsidized payments as well.

  21. If children are eligible for social security benefits and they are in school out of the country can they still receive the benefit?

  22. Our nephew is going blind and prior to going into foster care, received SS benefits -I presume through SSI 9both parents are still alive). We’re likely going to become his legal guardians. Would his SSI eligibility/payments be dependent on how much we made? Or would he not be eligible for payments under legal guardianship?

    • Thank you for your question Nicole. For Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiaries, we generally consider their living arrangements as another factor used to determine how much SSI they can get. Also, any food or shelter they get from someone else may reduce their SSI benefit. Please visit our “Understanding Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Home Page” for more information. The rules for SSI can be complicated and vary depending on the situation. We recommend that you contact your local office or call our toll-free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks.

  23. Im on disability in IL due to an injury at work. Ive been on disability since 2013. I have 3 children 1 who is now 18 but was under 18 at the time I started receiving disability. The other 2 whom are 4 and 1 and live with me. I have been told numerous times that I cannot receive benefits for them. I am also married and have been told she cant even get spousal benefits so why is this? They tell me its bc I have too much income but tell me how $1218 a month is too much with 4 people in the household?

    • Hi Andrew. Generally, when you qualify for Social Security disability benefits, your children may also qualify to receive benefits on your record. However, we must first establish and pay benefits to you, the insured individual. However, keep in mind that there is a limit to the amount we can pay on your record. We probably need additional information to provide a reasonable explanation to your situation. Unfortunately, but for your security, we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. One of our agents should be able to provide you with an explanation and answer questions about this matter. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day, or later in the week. Thanks.

  24. My daughter is 17 and we have been receiving survivor benefits for several years due to my husbands death. She is now trying to tell me that the money that we have been receiving should be hers, and not for me to help raise her. She has even mentioned seeking a lawyer. I cannot seem to find a valid answer as to who actually is responsible for the money. Both of our names are on the check and I have been using it to supplement my income to be able to keep our lives afloat. I have just been blind sided by this situation and I just want to know legally is it her money or not?

    • Thank you for your question Christi. The survivor’s benefit you receive is paid to help meet your daughter’s basic needs. You are the assigned representative payee for your daughter’s benefits. We appoint a payee to receive the Social Security benefits for anyone who can’t manage or direct the management of his or her benefits. The law requires most minor children to have payees. As a payee, your main duty is to make sure the current needs of the beneficiary (your daughter) are met. You should use benefits for current needs (such as food, clothing, shelter, utilities, dental and medical care, and personal comfort items), or for reasonably foreseeable needs. You must use benefits in the best interests of the beneficiary, according to your best judgment. You can find answers to many questions by visiting our website at: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/payee. For further guidance, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. or you can contact your local Social Security office directly.

  25. I am on social security I had lost my job 7 years ago and was homeless 10 mos. My oldest daughter is 25 and they still want me to pay child support. my social security is fix income. I have enough to eat , and pay rent that it.

  26. My Son Receives SS because of me,and Yet he has only gotten one raise the whole time he get’s it, can anyone answer me why he doesn’t get one???

  27. I have a question. My parents passed away when I was 6. It’s was a murder suicide, so my moms social security benefits was only given to us when we turn 18. My guardian who is my aunt took the money out with out telling me just befor I turned 18. She’s said she’s sorry but I had a plan for my future with that money. What should I do. She said it was $52,000 that was taken.

    • Hi Savannah! If you suspect misuse of Social Security benefits, report it. We will investigate all allegations of misuse, gather facts and evidence, and make a decision on whether misuse has occurred. Please call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to speak to one of our representatives. Or you can contact your local Social Security office. Thanks!

  28. I have had legal custody of my 2 grandchildren for 7 years, I have been on disability for over 4 and have requested they be put on my disability to no avail, I am now in the process of adopting them but it will be months, I am alone raising them on just my disability. Their mother doesn’t live near us but she is on disability doesn’t that qualify for them to be on mine?

  29. This may be a far reaching question… My father died in a home fire back in the 1950s and my sister and I were 9 and 12 years old. We just found out that our mother never filed for social security benefits for us from my father’s social security …our mother is also deceased .
    Is there a way to go back in time and file for those benefits ?

    • Generally, we allow retroactivity up to six months for survivor’s benefits. For security reasons, we do not have access to personal records via this blog. If you have additional questions, please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week. Thanks.

  30. If two children are being raised by their grandparents and receive SS due to their father passing, when one turns 18, will the older ones benefits be given to the other child not yet 18? Also, with the younger one working, how much is she able to make without causing changes to her benefits?

    • Hi, Katie. A child under age 18 (19 if still in elementary or secondary school) can receive up to 75 percent of the deceased parent’s primary insured amount. Benefits are subject to a “family maximum”. In this case, the youngest child may get an increase of his/her benefits when the oldest child’s benefits are terminated. In regards to how much survivors may earn while they receive benefits, for 2017, the earnings limit for someone under full retirement age is $16,920. See our Retirement Planner: Getting Benefits While Working for more information. You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week. Thanks!

    • Hi! You may be getting our programs confused. If the child is disabled and receiving SSI benefits, the child’s benefits may continue, based on their medical condition, income and resources. Our Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, is based on the needs of the individual and are only paid to the qualifying person.

      However, if you are referring to benefits paid under the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, usually the benefits stop when children reach age 18 unless they are disabled. If the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first. For more information, please visit our “Disability Planner: Benefits For Your Children” page at We hope this helps.

  31. my husband was a disability pensioner since 2006,now his turning 65 years old.We apply our only son which is a 9 years of age as his beneficiary.Do the child receive payback since birth?

    • Hi, Chirel. Generally, we allow retroactivity up to six months for auxiliary’s benefits. For security reasons, we do not have access to personal records via this blog. If you have additional questions, please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week. Thanks.

  32. I have a question. A baby, that is now 17 months old was placed in my home by CPS and now I have kinship guardianship. His mother is in jail and his father died last year at age 24 of a heroin overdose. I receive SSD, I’m a disabled single male. I love Michael ! but I could use additional money. He goes through whole milk like a baby cow. I was told by the lawyer last week that I could apply for death benefits from his dad or maybe even supplemental income from my SSD. I’m confused because I didn’t adopt and his father did not pay into SS. Is Michael entitled to any benefits? We both live on 800.00 a month and my food stamps. Everyone said to become his foster parent but CPS did not give me that option. When I mentioned it I was told Michael would be removed from my home. That it was all a different process. Me and this god-sent little angel are very happy with or without SS but it would be very helpful.

    • Hi, Jess. You are correct, to get benefits, a child must have:
      • A parent who’s disabled or retired and entitled to Social Security benefits; or
      • A parent who died after having worked long enough in a job where they paid Social Security taxes.
      Under certain circumstances, we can pay benefits to a stepchild, grandchild, step-grandchild, or adopted child. Please read our publication, Benefits for Children, for more information. For your security and the security of others, we do not have access to personal information. We ask that members in our Blog community to work with their local office on specific questions about their case. You can also call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). Representatives are available Monday through Friday between 7:00a.m. and 7:00p.m. Generally, you’ll have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week. We hope this helps!

    • The baby should be getting survivor benefits, and you should ask your state about SNAP and so on. WIC will also give you milk and other healthy foods until the baby is 5.

  33. I have a question, my sons father was injured at work and my son receives money through his father’s social security disability. He did not receive his money this month. I cannot get through to ANYONE at the social security contact numbers provided, I can’t even log Into the representative payee online page. It tells me my information is invalid. Who and how do i contact someone to find out what has happened? Usually the 1-800 has an automated system that gives you an option to leave a call back number. I have been calling all day and it has been a busy signal everytime.

  34. My husband receives SSDI and my two children receive benefits totaling 50% of his benefit. My older child will be turning 18 soon. When she turns 18, will the benefit amount for the children automatically reallocate so that the total 50% benefit amount is paid to my son who is aged 12, or are we essentially taking a family pay cut now that she has aged out? I can’t seem to find a definitive answer. Thank you.

    • Hi, Sarah. In this case, the youngest child may get an increase of his benefits when the oldest child’s benefits are terminated. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week. Thanks!

  35. I have two sons and their father was just arrested and charged with felonies. He has been incarcerated before and likely will be again for 10-15 years. He does not currently receive ssd. Are my sons entitiled to it? How do I apply if so?

  36. I was wondering what is a child. Death benifits from a parent supose to be used for? Can you use the money for your rent and things needed for the kids

  37. I have full custody of my granddaughter….she gets Social Security for disabilities. ( she was born 15weeks early)….her father just passed last week….is she entitled to SSI for his death also since he iant here anyway

  38. My ex and I have 2 children together. I have had custody since they were little. She provided support by paying child care and buying groceries, school clothes, etc. But they haven’t resided with her for about 3 years. Does the fact that they did not reside with her change the amount of survivor benefits they will receive? We were never married and had no formal custody arangement.

  39. If a spouse lived and worked in the USA, with a proper Social Security Number but his children never lived in the USA and are not USA citizens, can the children receive Social Security Survivor Benefits after the death of the parent who lived and worked in the USA. (This question assumes that the deceased parent did pay Social Security during his employment in the USA.)

  40. This ssi kills me… the father of my last two kids one by chance the other by sexual assault…. gets over $700 in ssi every month has not once lived in his own and owes no more than a $50 phone bill each month works under the table to keep his ssi mostly in construction but brags how he doesn’t have to pay child support and can make as many babies as he wants and not be held accountable… yet I struggle daily working my butt off for my 3 kids to have and I am able to get the bare minimum while he spends his “hard earned crazy check” on everything he can and lands himself in jail it’s just a shame!!! My mother is disabled physically can’t walk some days and can’t get help because she isn’t 60 and my dad wasn’t 60 when he passed but my children’s sperm donor can take grate advantage of the system and my kids have to do without

  41. I have had legal custody of grandchild since birth she is 13. I am retired and receive social security . Both parents are non visible. I receive medical insurance for her , Can she be on my account for benefits

    • Hi Mary, thank you for your question. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. In addition to providing for more than 50% of their support as you are doing now, the biological parents of the children must be deceased or disabled, or you must have legally adopted them. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  42. My grandchildren’s father passed February 2017 and my daughter applied for Social Security. All she had gotten from them is a bunch of grief and denials. She gave them everything they asked for . birth certs, social security cards, tax returns, and even a notorized letter from his sister stating they are his babies and they still deny that he is their father. They were together for 10 years and never were apart. Now my grandchildren can not get the benefits that are rightfully theirs. Any help out there will be greatly appreciated. We live in Nevada

  43. I have a question. So I’m moving out of my moms house, and was wondering how I get my ssi check. Since I’m not going to be living with her anymore.

  44. If my father is deceased, and I don’t live with my mother, can I still get the social security benefits without her? I live with my aunt, but she doesn’t have any legal guardianship over me.

    • You may still be eligible to continue receiving your benefits even if you’re living with your aunt. Remember, if you receive benefits from Social Security, you have a legal obligation to report changes. If a representative payee is involved, we may have to change that as well. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks.

  45. I have breast cancer and receive ssi, I also have two daughters ages 10&13. My youngest child’s father is also on disability, I want to know why my children are eligible for benefits.

  46. My 30 year old daughter receive Social Security benefits for disability. She did not make enough income and is receiving her benefits based on my income. She has dependent children. Are those children eligible for Social Security based on my income as well?

    • Thank you for your question, Tress. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. In addition to providing for more than 50% of their support, the biological parents of the children must be deceased or disabled, or you must have legally adopted them. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  47. if you do not stay with the parent who gets disability, does that mean you get cut off you’re check for staying with them?

    • Hello Geraldine. We are sorry for this inconvenience. Unfortunately and because of security reasons we do not have access to personal records in this venue. One of our representatives should be able to provide you with an explanation and answer your questions about this matter. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Or visit your local Social Security office for further assistance. Thanks.

  48. I was wondering if a gramd parent raising their grand child can out them on their social security plan without having any papers with the fathers name on it if anyone could answer this question i would be greatful

  49. Hello Mr Borland,
    I need a little help for my grandson Jesse
    About 16 years ago he was receiving SSI for a disability of a type of Autism ,he was about 6 or7
    He was living with his mother (my daughter) at the time.after a divorce from his father
    When he was 10 he went to live with his father and was taken off SSI disability even though he still had the same problem that was never treated
    He is now living with me and his grandmother (who has alzheimer’s) for that past 3 years. Unable to find a job,he plays on his computer all day and night,
    I am trying to find him a job that he can do. I am working with The Washington .State Rehabilitation Agency who can place him on a number 1 priority
    if i can provide records of his disability. I have contacted the agency in
    Puyallup Washington who first gave the diagnosis but their records don’t go back as far as 16 years ago.. Since he was on SSI disability, there must be records of his medical condition. Can you help me located them in order that he may find employment?
    There is an opportunity for him at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard that I have checked about securing his employment.
    Thank you for your help
    Richard C
    Grandfather

    • Thank you for contacting us, Richard. Unfortunately, but for security reasons, we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please continue working with your local Social Security office. If you are unable to visit the local office, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks.

  50. Children’s father died at age 54 unexpectedly. Parents are divorced for years. Children were told at age 11,12 that they are not entitled to any benefits. Reason they say is that Dad owed Social Security. How can they be held responsible or punished for a depth, and put in hardship for a deceased fathers problem with Social Security? This is just not acceptable. Children need a home and secure life.

  51. My daughters dad started recieving ssi disability checks for himself.I k like his other two kids now his children are supposed to get one as well but my question is my daughter isin her last year befor graduating but she is also homeschooled.Will she still be entitled to one as well. thanks

  52. Can children ( who have Social security numbers) receive Social Security benefits if their father ( – who was living with them in the United States and is undocumented )- dies.?? I work as a social worker at a Trauma Hospital in Walnut Creek.

  53. It isn’t clear to me whether a child’s benefits are payable in the circumstance of shared custody stemming from a divorce.

    • Hi John, when you qualify for Social Security (retirement or disability) benefits, your children may also qualify to receive benefits on your record regardless of your civil status.
      You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 if you have specific questions in your situation. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
      Please read our publication Benefits for Children for more information. We hope this helps!

  54. I am sick and draw SSI, I have full custody of my granddaughters the dads in prison, Mom don’t work or come to see the girls. I don’t know if they is any other help that I could get to help me make it.. I get 735.00 a month and from what i here I can’t even get the earned income credit because I can’t work..please let me know..

  55. My grandaughter has lived with me since she was born. I am currently going through the process of adopting her.I signed up to receive social security in July 2017. Once adoption is completed I was told that I could receive benefits for her. My question is will her benefits retroactive back to when I signed up in July 2017?

    • My Grandaughter has lived with me since her birth. I am currently going through the legal process of adopting her. I signed up for social security in July 2017. I was told once adoption is completed I could receive benefits for her. My question is will her benefits retroactive back to when I signed up in July 2017?

  56. Im on disability and my son grts only 240 a month under me but can he qualify fir his own checks cause last few yrs hes being treated for a few things like he gets meds for adhd and he also has ashma and has hand and speach issues

  57. My kids should have the right too get approved for having too face a monster that damaged them for the rest of there lifes i got denied twice for each kids being sexual assaulted and both have mental issues such as attention deficient disorder suside thoughts and adhd with learning disabilities he takes meds for adhd currwntly in therapy for 1year other kid has sleep disorder and wakes up in nightmares yelling or crying both have speech impairment. Both going too therapy its not right they got dennied i see drugies get ssi and nothings wrong with them they fake it too get approved and my kids have issues that are true facts and i provided tons of paper work i doubt any of these people read thru it pls any help on information how too get approved please msg me mrarojas1988@gmail.com

  58. My son receives benefits, because his father is disabled. I am the payee, how do I get his check direct deposited into his bank account?

    • Hello Caryl. You can start or update direct deposit by contacting your bank, credit union, or savings and loan association. In some cases, the checking or savings account title must show the beneficiary’s ownership of the funds and show you as the financial agent. Keep in mind that the beneficiary must never have direct access to the account. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

  59. I want to collect off my ex husbands social security. we were married for 12 years. I am unmarried. How and what do i have to do, to do this? I was told that i could.

    • If you are divorced, but your marriage lasted 10 years or longer and unmarried, you can receive benefits on your ex-spouse’s record if:
      •You are age 62 or older;
      •Your ex-spouse is entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits; and
      •The benefit you are entitled to receive based on your own work is less than the benefit you would receive based on your ex-spouse’s work.
      To apply or to make an appointment, call 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

      What is the eligibility for Social Security spouse’s benefits and my own retirement benefits?

  60. My wife and I have full guardianship of our 15 year old
    grandson as a result of the Father and Mother abandoning him. The Father and Mother are still living, the Mother in Mexico and the Father whose existence is unknown. We have never applied for SSI or SS under the Father’s name or the Mother’s, not knowing whether the Mother has secured enough working years to be eligible. Is there any way we can apply for Soc. Security support for our Grandson?

    • Thank you for your question. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. Generally, the biological parents of the child must be deceased or disabled, or the grandchild must be legally adopted by the grandparent. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  61. I have a situation where the father of my 11 year old child (he is married to another woman), even though he was eligible for Social Securty five years ago at the age of 62, refuses to apply for benefit because he absolutely refuses to put any money into my hands to raise his child. He refused to sign paternity papers, and manipulated/threatened me for over a decade not to go to the courts or ‘I will not like what I will find’. So I have two children to provide for on my income alone, food, shelter, childcare, medical, everything… thusly a decade slipped from me before I finally stopped and realized the man is living a life as if he has no child! His family has a lot of money so naturally, I feared he would hire big time lawyers to take my son from me. I finally kicked him to the curb and petitioned for child support and in the interim, exposed his affair to his family. When the judge adjudicated him to be the father via imposed DNA testing, and gave me the father’s SS number to go to the SS Administration to try to obtain benefits for my son, SS Administration told me the father has to fiist apply for benefit. So children have to go hungry and homeless and their future unstable because the government wants to protect these scrupulous older parents? What the heck?

  62. My husband and I have legal guardianship of 5 grandkids under the age of 17. I am now recieving Social Security benefits. Do they qualify as dependents to recieve any benefit from my Social Security ?
    Thank you .
    Lind Darr

    • Thank you for your question Linda. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. Generally, the biological parents of the child must be deceased or disabled, or the grandchild must be legally adopted by the grandparent. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  63. I am administrator for a child receiving disability.
    He did not receive a payment in February. His name is
    Ricardo Nino, El Dorado, Arkansas. An account was opened at First Financial Bank in El Dorado on his behalf. I sent the paper in that showed the account. Please check. The bank received no deposit from Social Security in February.
    Thank you in advance….

    • Hello Nancy. Unfortunately, and because of security reasons we do not have access to personal records in this blog and cannot assist you with this matter. One of our representatives should be able to provide you with an explanation.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks.

  64. I need help,
    My daughter receives SSA payments because she is a minor and I am a retired worker.
    I can find nothing related to do I need to file a yearly report for her (I see info.. on SSI and SSD, but not on SSA).
    2. Do I need to keep her payments in a separate account or may I put it into one of my accounts? May I keep some of it in “cash”?

    • Thank you for your question, Robert.
      Each year, Social Security will ask you to complete a form to account for the benefits you’ve received for your daughter. You may access the payee form online after you receive the paper form in the mail. Because you need to enter information from the paper form online, you cannot access the online form until you receive the form in the mail.
      Generally, we recommend that as a representative payee you establish a checking or savings account with a tittle that shows the beneficiary’s ownership of the funds and show you as the financial agent. For example: “(Your name), representative payee for (beneficiary’s name).” There is an exception for parents and spouses who are representative payees. A common checking account for all family members living in the same household who receive benefits may show a parent or spouse as the owner of the account. Children’s savings, however, must be in separate savings accounts for each child, showing the child as the account owner.
      Our publication: A Guide for Representative Payees, provides more information on this topic. We hope this information helps!

  65. Good afternoon,
    I am following up because my daughter use to get child support until her father became ill and will not be returning to work probably for a couple of years. I believe his mother filed for SSI for him and they said that m daughter hi will be turning 12 this month should be getting it as well, but his family did not ask me for any information. I wanted to see if you can guide me in the right direction. he has been in the hospital for over a month so far, i did contact child support here in NJ to make them aware why he has not been able to pay, If you can guide me, i would appreciate it.

    Thank you,

    • Thank you for contacting us, Bethany. If the father qualifies for Disability Benefits, your daughter also may qualify for benefits on his record. See our publication: Benefits for Children for more information.
      To see if your daughter is eligible for benefits and to schedule an appointment with the local Social Security office, call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week.

  66. I am the foster parent of my great nephew, his father was killed and he was receiving a Social Security Check, once his grandmother died and his mother has a criminal record the check was stopped. How can I find out more information about this?

    • Thank you for your question, Elva. Normally, benefits for children stop when children reach age 18, unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, Social Security benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first. Also, if under age 18, we -generally- send payments to a representative payee.
      One of our agents should provide better guidance. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or you and your great-nephew can contact the local Social Security office directly.

  67. Question. My son received disability from about 2010-2012. I was a single mother working for the government. He has asthma and an IEP. Well, in early 2012 I was told they had paid too much so I wouldn’t get anymore payments. I called to make sure I didn’t have to send money, and the lady said not that it would probably even out. Fast forward to 2017. My son’s doc office had called about a bill and they noticed where it said he was eligible for Medicaid and wondered why I didn’t use it. I never knew! They looked further into for me, and found out since he was no longer getting disability, he was ineligible.

    2018 I get a call from a Loan Officer regarding a home loan she asked who got disability. That reminded me of the situation for my son. She told me I should check into it. I called SSA. The lady asked when was the last time I had contacted them. I said probably 2012. She said we were sending letters to you asking for an updated address and banking information. I said, oh I moved and never got it. She said well, the payments stopped because you didn’t reply to the letters. She asked for an updated address and I asked if there was money owed to me. She said let me look, but she never answered and said that my son would need to reapply and I would have to get all the paperwork from the docs and schools. I asked how applied, and she said she was doing it for me.

    My question is, does this mean there is possibly money owed to me? Did she avoid my question about money owed to me, because she isn’t allowed to answer that over the phone? Does anyone know?

    • Unfortunately, but for security reasons, we do not have access to personal records in this blog and cannot answer your question at this time. Please continue working with your local office. You can request to speak with the manager to see how we can help to expedite resolution of your situation.
      If you are unable to visit the local office, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks.

  68. I have some one whose husband is receiving social security disability and will be turning 65 this summer, they have a 10 year old son who is receiving monies off of his father’s disability. When age 65 is reached will the monies for the child stop. Thanks for your help

    • Thank you for your question. Normally, benefits for children stop when children reach age 18, unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, Social Security benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first. We hope this information helps!

  69. My son’s mother is disabled. Is there a check that he is supposed to receive due to this. If so how do I apply for it.

  70. My children recieve pay off of their father’s disability, but the problem we are having is that, they arent even getting half of what he makes…arent they supposed to recieve half of it? We dont understand. We had to fight to get it started.

    • Hi Judy. Workers receive Social Security retirement and disability benefits based on their covered earnings. Members of their families may also qualify for benefits based on those earnings. However, there is a limit to the amount we can pay each family member.
      Benefits for family members have always been limited by the family maximum rules. The maximum family benefit is the maximum monthly amount that can be paid on a worker’s earnings record. We hope this information helps!

  71. Hi me and my boy friend both get ssi i have a speck problem and he has ms l and I have a daughter that is in high school she has a small learn disbilty will she get a sis to cuz we are on sis

    • Hi Rebecca. If you are referring to Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, we make a determination on each individual case. Benefits issued through our Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, are based on the needs of the individual and are only paid to the qualifying person. There are no spouse’s, children’s or survivors benefits payable. Only children who are disabled may be eligible for SSI benefits.

  72. How does someone collect their court ordered child support on the parent who is receiving benefits?? The court ordered this to be deducted from the parent’s ssi and ssd benefits but has never been done.

  73. My wife & I are retired and drawing Social Security. We have just adopted our 2 grandsons ages 7 & 13. What brochure explains this, and where can we get further information about applying for their benefits?

    • Social Security will pay benefits to grandchildren when the grandparent retires, if certain conditions are met. Generally, the grandchild must be legally adopted by the grandparent. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.
      To make an appointment with your local office, call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 as soon as possible. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. An appointment is not required but it will establish “protective filing” and prevent loss of benefits. Thanks!

  74. What do I need to do, my daughter lost custody of my grandchildren who were receiving Social security benefits for them. My husband and I have custody of them now. How do we stop payments to my daughter and switch the payments to us.

    • Thank you for contacting us, Nancy. You or your husband need to apply to become the children’s Representative Payee as soon as possible. A face-to-face interview with a Social Security representative is required and you will have to visit your local office. Please bring the custody documents and proper identification.
      For more information, read our publication: A Guide For Representative Payees.
      If you have specific questions, or to make an appointment, please call 1-800-772-1213 Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

  75. How do I find out if my ex spouse is getting SS benefits and claiming our child as a dependent and claiming benefits on her?

  76. I sent my birth certificate in to the SS office at the death of my father and never received it back.My dad was Raymond E Stewart Jr. his ss # is *** – ** – ***

  77. My son turns 18 on May 12th and he’s still in high school and doesn’t graduate until June 2nd. Will I receive a payment in june for May, a payment in may for April and possibly a payment in July for June since he grauduates in June?

    • Hello Qiana. Normally, benefits for children stop -automatically- when children reach age 18, unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, Social Security benefits can continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first.
      Certification that he is in school at age 18 is required. Your son will need to complete page 2 of Form SSA-1372-BK, Student’s Statement Regarding School Attendance; have a school official certify on page 3 the information he provides; leave pages 4 and 5, Notice of Cessation of Full-Time School Attendance, with the school official; and return the completed and certified pages 2 and 3 to the local Social Security office as soon as possible.
      If you need further assistance, please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or contact your local office directly.

  78. My Daughter is get social security because my husband Retired Military and she’s 17 years old right now and she about to turn 18 years old on May 24 so will she still get her money On May 8, 2018 or will it stop

  79. Does anyone know if my child, who gets survivor benefits because her dad passed last year can get married? She is and will be a full time student too, but her fiance is in the military and they just had a baby, so they are considering it and we are weighing all the options. Any help is appreciated!

    • Thank you for your question, Andrea. Generally, benefits for children under age 18 or students ages 18 or 19 will end when they marry.

  80. If a parent signs their parental rights away and dies a couple years later; is the child eligible for survivor benifits still?

    • Hi Crystal. Unfortunately, your question is a bit more complex than we can answer in this forum. Please call 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you’ll have a shorter wait time if you call later in the day. Thanks!

  81. i am trying to find the calculator to determine how much my nephew, will receive from his deceased father.
    Joshua T Tolliver born 6~3~88 to 10~24~17
    *** – ** – *** thank you

    • Hello Jennifer, the survivors benefit amount would be based on the earnings of the person who died. The more they paid into Social Security, the higher the benefit amount would be. The monthly amount you would get is a percentage of the deceased’s basic Social Security benefit. See more in the “Survivors Benefit Amount” section of our Benefit Planner for Survivors web page. Thanks!

    • Hello Leon. Normally, benefits for children stop when children reach age 18, unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, Social Security benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first.
      Also, we generally pay benefits to the adult- Representative payee of the child, up until the child turns 18.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks!

  82. Question for everyone – I’m a social worker at a high school. I am working with a student whose dad receives SS benefits because her mother is deceased. She is looking for a summer job. Does her employment effect the amount of SS her father gets? He is worried about loosing the support while she is still in high school.

  83. “If you’re given a choice between money and sex appeal, take the money. As you get older, the money will become your sex appeal.” – Katherine Hepburn

  84. I receive my dad’s survivors benefits and I was suppose to graduate on May 25th 2018. But I did not earn enough credits so I have to go back and earn those credits. What do I need to do in order to receive extended benefits? I have a letter from New London High School explaining that information.
    If you could please let me know what steps I need to take. Thank you!

  85. IF A CHILD IS GETTING SOC SEC BENEFITS FROM A DECEASED PARENT CAN THEY STILL DRAW IF THEY QUIT SCHOOL?

    • Hello Jo Ann. In general benefits stop when the child reaches age 18 (unless the child is a student or disabled). Please read our publication “Benefits for Children” for more information.

    • Hi Jennifer, when you qualify for Social Security disability benefits, your children may also qualify to receive benefits on your record.
      For further assistant, please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or visit your local Social Security office. An appointment is not required, but if you call ahead and schedule one, it may reduce the time you spend waiting to apply. Thanks!

  86. hi like to ask , my son has autism since birth , and never apply for any type of benefits, he is a us citizen born abroad, and still residing in the philippine, like to ask if he can get some type of benefits from social security from our philippines embassy

    • Thank you for your question, Philippe. Children can be eligible for Social Security benefits when one or both of their parents are disabled, retired, or deceased. Benefits stop when your child reaches age 18 unless your child is a student or disabled. The Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program pays benefits to adults who have a disability that began before they became 22-years-old. We consider this benefit as a “child’s” benefit because it’s paid on a parent’s Social Security earnings record.
      Children younger than age 18 who have disabilities and are U.S. citizen, residing in one of the fifty states, District of Columbia, or the Northern Mariana Island may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments.
      We recommend that individuals living outside the United States contact the nearest Federal Benefits Unit or U.S. embassy in their area, for any assistance related to Social Security programs and benefits.
      Also, our Office of International Operations home page provides more information to assist our customers living abroad. We hope this information helps!

  87. If I am still paying 100% of my child’s expenses and he still lives with me, why is he the only one receiving benefits? These Social Security benefits are to help me make sure he lives the lifestyle he is accustomed to when his dad was alive. If this is taken from me, he will not live the same life style, plus you are now putting $1600 a month into the hands of a teenager…ARE you nuts? it needs to be managed by an adult. Social Security administration must relook at their rules and regulations and rewrite them to reflect the ideas of today. Giving money to children today opens doors that we should not be opening.

  88. MY GRANDSON JOSEPH ALEXANDER AND HIS FATHER KENNETH ALEXANDER RECIEVE A DEATH BENEFIT FROM MY GRANDSON’S DECEASED MOTHER CATHEY LYNN LARSEN HE WILL BE 18 ON OCTOBER 3 2018 AND WANTS HIS FATHER OFF HIS DEATH BENEFITS FROM HIS MOTHER.. HE IS IN SCHOOL AND PLANS ON GOING TO COLLEGE WHAT DOES HE HAVE TO DO TO GET HIS OWN BENEFITS AND WHAT IS THE AGE THAT THESE BENEFITS END FOR HIM ANY INFORMATION WOULD BE VERY HELPFUL. HE WILL BE OPENING HIS OWN BANK ACCOUNT CAN HE HAVE HIS DECEASED MOTHERS CHECK COME TO HIS ACCOUNT AND WHEN SHOULD HE TALK TO SOMEONE ABOUT CHANGING HIS STATUS OF HIS BENEFITS THANKYOU IF NEEDED I WILL SUBMIT THEIR SOCIAL SECURITY #’S

    • Thank you for contacting us Barbara. Normally, benefits stop when children reach age 18 unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first. If the child continues to attend school he/she must notify us at least three months before his/her 18th birthday. The child must complete a statement of attendance, certified by a school official.
      Generally, if the beneficiary is under age 18, we pay benefits to a representative payee.
      We start paying benefits directly to the beneficiary when he or she turns age 18.
      Your grandson can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, should he need further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
      We hope this information helps!

    • Thank you for contacting us, Darvin. You will have to contact your local Social Security office. A face-to-face interview is required to select and approve a new representative payee. Generally, we look for family or friends to serve as representative payees. When friends or family are not able to serve as payees, Social Security looks for qualified organizations to be representative payees.
      Please call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to speak to one of our representatives if you need further assistance. Thanks!

  89. I think it was ssi my son was getting but it stopped. I dont know why i even sent them everything they needed to keep my son on. My hours at work have been cut and its been a little harder for us. We were getting $400 i cant remember the exact amount but it helped us so much with our son. I want to re apply but i dont know how. he had it since he was born untill 2 years ago. He was born early (27weeks) and hes almost 4 and hes still a special needs kid. Is there a way i can re apply for this

    • Hello Jess. Based on the information you provided, you will have to re-apply for your son’s SSI benefits.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Or contact your local office directly.
      Thanks.

  90. I would like to know if my child’s application to receive my deceased spouses social security was excepted?

  91. I am having difficulties or do not know how to apply for benefit for my son living in Haiti, I was told by the Nyack social security office to apply at the ambassy in Haiti, but there they told me they no longer doing that

  92. I receive benefits (just approved) I have sole legal custody of 2 grandsons and have had them almost 7 yrs are they entitled to benefits also ?

    • Hello James. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. In addition to providing for more than 50% of their support as you may be doing now, the biological parents of the children must be deceased or disabled, or you must have legally adopted them.
      See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  93. Is it wrong of me to want to be a father and husband someday even though I’m disabled? I really want to be a dad but I don’t want to start something I cant afford. it just seems unfair to me that I cant give a child a life of wealth and quality, but I would raise him or her right. my kid would suffer under money restrictions as I cant work and anyone who would marry me would probably also be disabled and poor. If I meet a rich woman it wouldn’t be so much an issue, but it is what it is. I would make a good dad I helped raise kids from my teen years and live in a small town so the issues would be things like medical insurance school cost clothes and accessories so they would fit in and the normal spending. it just seems like I’m being dead weight treated and my condition is keeping me from the American dream. I just want to be a dad since I would be good at it since I cant be a worker I have time to teach and care take but the issue is that my kid may have a hard life I just really was wondering if it is ok for me to be a dad and if theres a good gov. book or websites you could recommend about the cost of living and the future economy for disabled poor Americans that want to not be a problem but still kinda think they should have the right to continue there family. I am the last of my last name in my bloodline that’s male and I really want to continue my lineage and last name together. also would it be wrong of me as a good parental figure in wanting to be a dad to just be a single parent with good family support just not financially? is the economy ok projected living standards getting better, or is it selfish and stupid of me to want to start a family? just curious if America would be there for my kid even though I’m poor and disabled ?

  94. Hello. I receive Social Security Benefits for retirement. I have just completed an adoption process for three of my grandchildren. I now have there updated birth-certificates. We live in Costa Rica. How do I get Social Security numbers for them?

  95. My granddaughter is 18 years old and attending college. Of course, the Social Security Administration is not obliged to notify or outwardly give the information that a dependent can make a claim.When she was born her absent father never mentioned he was getting SSD. Can my granddaughter claim at least some retroactive benefits?
    Thank you.

  96. How is it proved to social security that the parent who is raising the disabled child does not receive the benefits, rather, the absent parent does?

    • Hello Diane. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
      Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks!

  97. If the deceased parent was a stay at home and did not work, are the children not entitled to social security? This is sad because now the father has to pay for child care and is struggling. This is a situation in my family, can you please send me any info that may be of help to them.

    • Hello Deonne. Credits are the “building blocks” we use to find out whether you have the minimum amount of covered work to qualify for each type of Social Security benefit.
      The number of credits needed for family members to be eligible for survivors benefits depends on your age when you die. Under a special rule, we can pay benefits to your children and your spouse who is caring for your children even if your record doesn’t have the number of credits needed. They can get benefits if you have credits for one and one-half year’s work (6 credits) in the three years just before your death.
      You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents for specifics in your situation. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time when you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks.

  98. It’s good that children will have their benefits even thou they’re still a kid. This is just to ensure that they have a good health and they are properly taken cared of by our medical teams. Thanks for sharing this info!

  99. Hi. I am looking for answers regarding what happens when a divorced, custodial parent of a child recieving SSI becomes disabled? Specifically if the parents disability is so severe that they may no longer be able to take care of the child and may need to turn custody over to other parent.

  100. I am curious as to why it takes so long to get a Federal Court date set for a child. it has been two years since the attorney has been trying to get a Court Date. It has been seven years since the original claim was filed. I am asking for my eight year old great granddaughter who has
    been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. I have been told that Randall Forbes is the only attorney that handles children

    • Hello Mable. The length of time it takes to get a hearing can vary from state to state. We attempt to resolve all claims promptly, but there may be delays due to the volume of pending appeals in your area. The good news is that we are trying to conduct many of our hearings through video teleconferencing (VTC) to speed up the process.
      Visit our “Hearing And Appeals” web page for more information, and continue working with your attorney and local hearing office on specific questions about your case. Thanks!

  101. If a child that is receiving SSA, and they live with their real mom and step-dad… if the mom passes away is the step-dad entitled to receive the SSA benefits on behalf of the children?

    • Hello Cathy. We generally appoint a suitable representative payee who can manage the payments on behalf of a minor child. In most cases, we select an adult-relative living in the same household to be the representative payee. When friends or family are not able to serve as payees, Social Security looks for qualified organizations to be representative payees.
      Please read our publication: A Guide For Representative Payees. If you have specific questions, please call 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. to speak to one of our representatives. Thanks!

  102. Can children of incarcerated parents receive social security benefits? Father had custody,. Mother is in drug rehab and grandparents are raising 11 year old boy

  103. If I take custody of my granddaughter will I receive a check for her? I am on social security disability not ssI

    • Thank you for your question, Sandra. Under current law, Social Security can only pay benefits to grandchildren if certain conditions are met. Generally, the biological parents of the child must be deceased or disabled, or the grandchild must be legally adopted by the grandparent. See “Benefits For Grandchildren” for more information.

  104. i need a copy of my daughters benefit letter. how do i go about getting that? The website says I cannot set her up a “my social security” account and she cant because she is not 18. Her name is Megan D. ss# ending in 6445 and mine ends in 1701. If I could get a copy emailed to me or instructions on how to get a copy I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you, Michelle O .

    • Hello Michelle. We do not have access to personal information, therefore, we do not do direct messaging in this venue.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and request a benefit verification letter be mailed to you. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week.
      Please be cautious about posting personal information on social media and communicating personal information via email. Thanks!

  105. My sister passed away on 04/01/2018. My nephew resides in Two Rivers WI and I reside in Milwaukee. How can I help my nephew get benefits? My sister was married and her wife is a felon, her wife is trying to find someone to apply for his benefits but my nephew will never see the money? What can I do? I do not know his SSN? Any suggests on where I can start?

  106. I’m 72 on SSI as I my Grandson lives with me can I put him on with me. SSI HIS BEEN WITH ME I HAVE POWER OF attorney

    • Thank you for using our blog, William. When a parent gets Social Security retirement benefits or disability benefits, his or her child also may get benefits. Children also can get benefits when a parent dies. The child can be a biological child, adopted child or stepchild. A dependent grandchild also may qualify.

      To get benefits, the child must be unmarried and:
      • Younger than age 18;
      • A full-time student (no higher than grade 12) 18 to 19 years old; or
      • Have a disability that started before age 22 and is 18 years or older.

      See our factsheet on Benefits for Children for more information.

  107. I need to change the direct deposit for my granddaughter. I was trying to figure out how to post everything online but it says to set up the account you have to be 18. So I am not able to see her info or change the bank info online? Do I have to take off of work again? Please advise.

  108. I am a non custodial (target of parental alienation) divorced, disabled, parent of standing. My ex, the child’s mom, had been rep payee, and, now, as of the child’s 18th birthday, is “refusing” to allow for the last 10 months the child remains eligible, being a) still in high school, to my knowledge (the mom hides all info), and b) if, “allowed” to “keep” the check coming, as, “my” dependent, as, I read it, per the criteria SSDI states, for the best interests of the child to be served. Instead, the mom, upon my letting the child and school know, that, FERPA and TEC (tx fam code ch. 26), not withstanding, my child should not lose funds.

    As to this, denial of info and funds, are, along with the mom’s apparent “insisting” on “claiming” the child for her selfish “tax dependent” status/scheme to hide all info per the alienation, I’ve been to local SS office out of state where I live, and, they had no interest in trying to redeem the status, or, investigating, a matter that is defrauding my child, of direct, continued/re-instatement, of $10,000 the child is entitled to, as I understand current facts, up through June 2019. The 800# and local office fail me, and child here. Help?!

  109. We adopted two children and will be adopting a third in November we are wondering if we died would these children receive any benefits, what if one of us dies and one is left will the other parent receive the social security from the other ones social security. How does that all work I heard we could collect the larger amount but would the adopted children get a benefit too or not?

  110. I have a permanent disability. The disability is Multiple Sclerosis, MS. This pesky disease has caused me to close my business and to discontinue my occupation.

    I have a 14 year old dependent and I was curious about any possible benefits he may receive? He is a natural child of me and my wife.

    Could you please explain the way I would need to go to inquire about possible benefits? Thank you! Doug

  111. Hi there

    I was wondering my daughter gets social security through her dads. He passed away a month ago. My mom leaves in Brazil and might help me to care for my 10 year old daughter. Now I’m citizen and will receive survivor benefits for my daughter care as well. If I take my daughter to Brazil to be with my mom will social security pay my mom the cost of taking care of my daughter?

    • We are sorry for your loss, Stela. Generally, a widow can start receiving survivors benefits as early as age 60. You can receive survivors benefits (at any age), if you have not remarried and you take care of the deceased worker’s child who is under age 16.
      In this situation, your mother does not qualify to receive Social Security benefits for taking care of your daughter.
      Remember, if you receive benefits from Social Security, you have a legal obligation to report changes, which could affect your (and your daughter’s) eligibility for benefits. Changes you need to report range from a change of address to traveling outside the United States.
      Our publication “Your Payments While You Are Outside the United States” explains how being outside the United States may affect your (your daughter’s) Social Security payments. It also tells you what information you need to report to us, and how to report it.
      You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks!

  112. I Sherri Knoke know what I receive each month for disability! That made my son Devin Michael Knoke eligible! I need to find out what he receives each month??? That information is being withheld from me!!!

  113. I am writing to you to respond to the letter you sent to me about children’s benefits for a child under 18 when their father dies. My daughter Ashley Hunter was 17 in 2004 when her father died in 2004. She was approved for benefits and only received one check in September 2004. Because my roommates moved out on me I had to move. At that time I changed my address but heard nothing from you all. She was not 18 until May 10 2005. She never received any more benefits after September 2004. Therefore she is entitled benefits for October 2004 to May 2005. Because she was 17 the checks were written out to me in her behalf. We lived at 554 Mohican Trail Wilmington NC 28409 at the time. I know for certain she did not receive any checks after September 2004 and none were forwarded to me. So all I am asking you to do is check on this. Please show me proof they she received the benefits she was due. I just know for fact she received no checks after September 2004 because I checked the mail box at the beginning of each month and there were no checks. Thank you for doing so. Susan B Hunter My current address is 4855 Langley Road Rocky Mount NC 27803

  114. Hello,
    My nieces father pasted away. What Social Security benefits Is she entitled to ? Is my niece eligible for Medicaid ? Thank you, for all your help.

Leave a Reply - (comment policy)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *