Social Security stopped my death benefit. Was that right? – Community News
Social Security

Social Security stopped my death benefit. Was that right?

Q. I used to receive a death benefit from SSI. My husband died in 2009. I received a death benefit, including for my two children until my daughter turned 16. Then they stopped my death benefit. Why? Also, Social Security said I have to wait until I turn 50, then I get the death benefit back. Is that correct?

— widow

A. We are sorry to hear about your issues.

These benefits can be confusing, but the eligibility requirements are very specific.

The Social Security Administration says there are several instances where spouses receive monthly death benefits from a deceased spouse, said Kenneth Van Leeuwen, a certified financial planner at Van Leeuwen & Company in Princeton.

The two circumstances that seem to apply to your question are that a widow who is 60 years of age or older, or 50 years of age if he is disabled, can receive benefits, as can someone caring for a dependent under the age of 16 , he said.

“It seems correct that the Social Security Administration stopped your benefits when your child turned 16 and will not resume until you are 50,” he said. “It wasn’t supposed to resume until age 60, but you stated that you are currently receiving disability benefits and that you could start receiving benefits again at age 50.”

We recommend that you contact Social Security directly so that they can advise you based on your details.

Mail your questions to [email protected]

Karin Price Mueller writes the Bamboozled column for NJ Advance Media and is the founder of Follow NJMoneyHelp on Twitter @NJMoneyHelp. Find NJMoneyHelp on Facebook. Sign up for‘s weekly e-newsletter.