It is not uncommon for the disabled surviving spouse of a deceased individual to feel hopeless and vulnerable. Many times the survivor has never worked due to a disability. For this individual social security enacted a survivor’s benefit. This benefit allows the disabled widow/widower to draw upon their deceased spouse’s social security and receive disability benefits. For example:
Mary and Jim have been married for 25 years. They are both 55. Jim has worked the entire time making a good salary. Mary has never worked because she suffers from depression and herniated discs in her lower back. Jim is in a car accident and dies. Mary is left without income.
Mary would be eligible to receive survivor benefits from social security. She will be able to benefit from all the years her husband paid into social security and receive social security disability.
This same type of benefit can be made available to children who have deceased parents.
These cases, however, are very complicated, and it is always best to seek out the representation from an attorney when pursuing survivor benefits. The expertise of an attorney can be the difference between winning and losing a claim for disability benefits or survivor benefits.