Disability, General, Retirement, SSI, Survivors

You and Your Family May Be Eligible for Increased Benefits

September 9, 2021 • By

Last Updated: September 9, 2021

mother and daughter using laptop onlineWe know your circumstances may change after you apply—or become eligible—for benefits. If you, or a family member, receive Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), certain life changes could entitle you to an increase in your benefit amount.

As part of our Potential Entitlement initiative, we want to help you identify where you might qualify for a higher benefit. For example, you may be entitled to higher benefits based on your own earnings record or someone else’s record. Some of the life changes that could possibly increase your benefits include the following scenarios:

  • If your spouse or ex-spouse dies, you may be eligible for a higher survivor benefit based on his or her earnings record. The death of an ex-spouse may entitle you to a higher survivor benefit even if you are already receiving a survivor benefit on another spouse. Our publication, Survivors Benefits, has additional information we encourage you to check out.
  • If you are receiving Social Security benefits based on your spouse’s work and you have worked, you may be eligible for a higher retirement benefit based on your own work.
  • If your deceased adult child provided at least half of your support, you may be eligible for a higher parent’s benefit based on your child’s work history. Our publication, Parent’s Benefits, includes more information you may want to consider.

We continue to focus our Potential Entitlement initiative on people who face barriers to service. This includes our elderly population, children with disabilities, veterans, SSI recipients, and people with limited English proficiency. We are proud to say that since we started the initiative in 2017, our efforts have resulted in approximately $553 million in retroactive and total monthly increased benefits paid.

We encourage you to check out our Explore the Benefits You May Be Due page for more information on any additional benefits available for you and your family. You can use your personal my Social Security account to check your benefit and payment information – along with your earnings record. If you don’t have a personal my Social Security account, you can create one today!

Please share this information with your friends and family—and post it on social media.


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Deputy Associate Commissioner, Office of Strategic and Digital Communications

Comments

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  1. Barb O.

    I received my regular SS payment this week and yesterday I received an additional SS deposit of a bit under $400. I have not been able to find any information about this payment. I looked at my account and this amount is not posted.

    Reply
    • Vonda

      For your security, Barb, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information.  Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

      Reply
  2. Patricia T.

    Wy did I received a extra direct deposit money from saa in October

    Reply
    • Vonda

      For your security, Patricia, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information.  Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

      Reply
  3. Anita M.

    Hi I just heard that Disability is supposed to be adding $92 a month to our regular pay . Can you please let me know if this is true

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Anita, thanks for using our blog. All monthly Social Security (retirement, disability and survivors) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for approximately 70 million Americans will see a 5.9% increase in their Social Security benefits and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments in 2022.

      The 5.9 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 64 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2022.  Increased payments to approximately 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on December 30, 2021. 

      For more details about the new COLA, visit our Cost-of-Living Adjustment information page.

      Reply
  4. Joan C.

    Our son is on SSI (he is disabled) we had planned that my husband was going to wait until he turned 70 to start drawing on Social Security. Is there any benefit for him to start earlier either for himself or our son?

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Joan, thanks for using our blog to ask your question. If your husband earned enough Social Security credits through his work, your son may be eligible for benefits on your husband’s record as a disabled adult child when your husband applies. We consider this a “child’s” benefit because it is paid on a parent’s Social Security earnings record. The disabled “adult child” must be unmarried, age 18 or older, have a disability that started before age 22, and meet the definition of disability for adults.

      To inquire about potential benefits, you can call your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

       

      Reply
  5. Wendy

    My husband just retired, I get SSDI, I only get 650 a month. Will my benefit go up?

    Reply
    • Wendy

      I should also add that I’m 54.

      Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Wendy, thanks for using our blog. If you’re asking about spouse’s benefits, you must be at least 62 years of age and your spouse must be receiving retirement or disability benefits. Check out our Benefits For Your Spouse web page for additional details. We hope this helps!

       

      Reply
  6. James D.

    I didn’t pay in enough to get just SSD so I think I get about 580 on the 3rd of SSD and then on the first SSI makes up the difference and gives me like 220 for a total of around 7:30 maybe but they said my kid that I raise alone and have full custody who doesn’t qualify because I haven’t paid in enough. Now that just doesn’t make sense to me I figured that if I make less than the national poverty level that I would get help with my kid versus somebody that’s making more is this a fact everywhere and will it ever change

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi James, thanks for using our blog. If you’re receiving Social Security benefits but you’re not insured on your own record, maybe you’re receiving disabled adult child benefits. If your mother or father earned enough Social Security credits through their work, you may be eligible for benefits as a disabled adult child. An adult who has a disability that began before age 22 may be eligible for benefits if a parent is deceased or starts receiving retirement or disability benefits. We consider this a “child’s” benefit because it is paid on a parent’s Social Security earnings record. The  disabled “adult child” must be unmarried, age 18 or older, have a disability that started before age 22, and meet the definition of disability for adults.

      To inquire about your benefits, you can call your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

       

      Reply
  7. Jeffrey T.

    can you remarry and still get survivors benefits

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Thanks for reading our blog, Jeffrey, and for your question. If you remarry after you reach age 60 (age 50 if you’re disabled), your remarriage will not affect your eligibility for survivors benefits. For more information, check out our  If You are the Survivor webpage.

      Reply
      • Pam

        Can you claim both wife and deceased husband’s social security benefits?

        Reply
        • Vonda

          Hi Pam, thanks for using our blog. If you already receive benefits as a spouse, under your husband’s record, your benefit will automatically convert to widow’s benefits after we receive the report of death. Typically, the funeral director notifies us of an individual’s passing by contacting the local Social Security office.

          You cannot report a death or apply for survivors benefits online. If you need to report a death or apply for benefits,you can call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information.  Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

           

           

          Reply
  8. Elizabeth C.

    I am a representative payee for my 2 children. I normally receive dependent benefits of 316 per child every 3rd of the month. This month there was an additional payment credited to my account in the amount of 216 each per child. Any idea as to why this could be?

    Reply
    • Vonda

      For your security, Elizabeth, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information.  Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

      Reply
  9. Terri S.

    I have been on SSDI since October 2012. I was divorced on July 2020. My ex husband provided 3/4 of the income for our family. I do not qualify for SSI. I am wondering if I would be entitled to a higher amount of disability check because of the divorce.
    Also, how will I apply for an ex-spouse’s social security when they retire? What is the earliest age they can retire? How do I know when my ex has retired and is collecting social security since he will not speak with me?
    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Vonda

      Hi Terri, thanks for using our blog. If you’re receiving Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits, which are based on your average lifetime earnings, the amount of your other income does not affect your benefit. 

      If you are divorced, you may be able to receive benefits based on your ex’s record if:

      – The marriage lasted 10 years or longer.

      – You’re unmarried.

      – You’re age 62 or older.

      – The benefit that you’re entitled to receive based on your own work is less than the benefit you would receive based on your ex’s work.

      – Your ex is entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits.

      Check out our Benefits For Your Divorced Spouse web page for more information.

      Reply
  10. Luke r.

    Awesome news! Really I am very haopy to read this news and appreciate the authority for this great initiative to provide Social Security Services for the American Hispanic Community. This is a very useful website where we can learn about how to get a Social Security card, plan for retirement, apply for benefits, etc. Actually, I am a professional academic writer at Edubirdie, Interested people can check other Chegg birdie reviews where we especially provide different kinds of academic writing services for college students. My passion is learning and teaching my students as a freelance academic advisor. Thank you author for sharing this good information with us.

    Reply

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