Old 10-07-2009, 10:01 AM #1 (permalink)
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Default Social Security

Does any one know much about social security.
My wife has ALS and she started receiving social security disability last year. We just found out that our minor children are eligible for a benefit also. As a spouse am I eligible also? We are having a hard time getting answers. Seems like no one volunteers answers until we ask specific questions.
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Old 10-07-2009, 10:45 AM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

Your children are able to receive disability from your wife. It is just a matter of filling out the form for them and having it approved, it will not be as much as your wife, but the good news is you will receive from the time your wife has received her disability. So you will receive back pay for that. I hope that helped.
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:07 AM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

I will get SS from Jan 2010, it will be for my daughter and myself. I am approved for it and my daughter's app is in process. So yes you will get it for your children. My wife will receive it after I pass away, but only till my daughter turns 18 or 16 (not sure which is correct). So you won't get any now, but later you might if you are caring for minor children. If your wife is receiving disability insurance, then you might want to make sure that you take that into account for back payments.
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:22 AM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

I'm still working, but after reading this now I'm wondering about something.

My social security report shows two amounts: a monthly disability SSDI benefit (which I will qualify for 5 months after I retire), and a retirement benefit. As I recall these are different line item amounts but approximately equal to one another.

So my question is, lets say I retire at the end of the year. I'll start receiving the SSDI in May 2010. If I die before I'm 62 years old (which is likely since that's 9 years from now) will my wife continue to receive any money, either from SSDI or retirement? Can she then apply for my retirement benefit at what would have been my 62nd birthday in 2018?

-Tom
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Old 10-07-2009, 03:12 PM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

Your minor children get benefits until they are 18, 19 if still in high school. there is a family limit however( 50 percent of my husbands amount) A spouse gets it if caring for a child until they turn 16. The family limit for us means when my son who will receive until 19 stops getting it my daughter who is 2 yrs younger will then get 50 per cent of my husbands benefit, so we will not take a cut. If you had 5 kids, each kid would get 10 percent each, 4 kids and a spouse 10 percent each, 1 kid would get the 50 percent. You should be able to get from the beginning of your wifes disability. ask for retroactive. We just had all this done this week. It only took one day for them to process the kids. PM me if you want
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Old 10-07-2009, 04:05 PM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

My situation's a little simpler than that... I have no dependent children. I'm just asking about what my wife will be able to get. She spent most of our married life staying home taking care of the kids. I'm hoping she can draw my retirement benefit after I die, but starting when?

-Tom
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Old 10-07-2009, 05:36 PM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

I believe it is when she is 62, unless she is disabled too. I will check on this for sure though. I read the info on the ss web site i think. Social Security Online - The Official Website of the U.S. Social Security Administration
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Old 10-07-2009, 09:46 PM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

Hi Tom,

I'm glad to see you're still working and I hope things all the way around are working well for you. You may find it helpful to call Social Security the number I use is 1-800-842-0588. Both my husband and I found that people we spoke to were very very helpful and answered our questions thoroughly.

I started receiving Social Security benefits October 2009 (retroactive from May 2007, 5 months after I stopped working) just before I turned 60. My husband turned 62 in July 2009. Our children are grown and out of the house. Since I was the breadwinner most of our lives my husband recieves benefits on my record and his also, so he began receiving Social Security benefits twice a month. One check is based on my earnings from social security disability and the other check is based on his earnings. His first one of the month comes on the 3rd Wed of the month based on my birthdate and his second one comes on the 4th Wed. based on his birthday. The total of the two checks would add up to 50% of my Social Security if he'd waited until he was age 65. We decided it was to our benefit to start taking them now. He does not get the full 50% because he took the benefits at age 62 as opposed to 65. However, it is also more money than we normally would've gotten because I am disabled. I think he will get the same if I die first or maybe more - I have to check. As you know, it turned out I have MMN and not ALS. He had cancer last year and has a cronic kidney disease.

I hope that is clear. As I said I think it's very helpful to talk directly to the Social Security people, and you can ask your questions specifically. Best wishes to you and yours. Sincerely, Peg
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Old 10-07-2009, 10:11 PM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Social Security

Hi Peg,

I'm glad to hear they stuck with the MMN diagnosis as I know they were waffling back and forth with ALS at one time too. Neither one is a picnic but rather have the MMN I guess. Sorry to hear of your husband's health issues.

Thanks to you and sadie for all the info. I was assuming there will be a continuous stream of SS checks for my wife starting when I quit working but it's sounding like there will be a gap after I die and before she's 62. Her income is pretty low; she mostly works for fun at Disneyland. This was one of my main concerns when I was diagnosed is that I can't really give her a comfortable retirement as I probably could have if I didn't get sick. There's some savings but not what it needs to be. That's life I guess.

Thanks again,
-Tom
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