Notifying Social Security of beneficiary death

Notifying Social Security of beneficiary death

July 15, 2009 by admin

You can report the death to a service representative by calling SSA toll free, 1-800-772-1213 (for the deaf or hard of hearing, call SSA's TTY number, 1-800-325-0778), from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Whenever you call, have the deceased person's Social Security number handy. To report the death of a beneficiary, you should:

  • Notify the bank or other financial institution of the beneficiary's death.
  • Request that the bank or other financial institution return any funds received for the month of death and later to Social Security as soon as possible.
  • Return checks to Social Security as soon as possible. DO NOT CASH any checks received for the month in which the beneficiary died or thereafter. For example, if the person dies in July, you must return the benefit paid in August.

A one-time payment of $255 can be paid to the surviving spouse if he or she was living with the deceased; or, if living apart, was receiving certain Social Security benefits on the deceased's record. If there is no surviving spouse, the payment is made to a child who is eligible for benefits on the deceased's record in the month of death.

Some of the deceased's family members may be able to receive Social Security benefits if the deceased person worked long enough under Social Security to qualify for benefits. You should get in touch with your local Social Security office as soon as you can to make sure the family receives all of the benefits to which they may be entitled.