Seeking Disability Benefits on Your Spouse’s Work Record
If you are a widow or widower and have become disabled, you may be eligible for Social Security disability (SSD) insurance benefits on your spouse’s work record, even if you have not personally worked enough quarters to be eligible on your own record.
Understanding SSD Benefits for Survivors
Federal law recognizes that many families are organized with one spouse going out to work full-time while the other spouse stays home or only works part-time. The death of one spouse, of course, has a major long-term impact on the other.
Therefore, Social Security disability provides insurance not only against the disability of those who have paid Social Security taxes, but also their widows and widowers. In order to be eligible for SSD survivors’ benefits, you need to meet certain criteria.
- Your spouse must have paid a sufficient amount into the system so that they would have been eligible for SSD if they had died before his or her death.
- You must have become disabled within seven years of your spouse’s death.
- You must be 50 years of age or older.
- You must be able to show a condition or conditions that meet the criteria for disability insurance benefits.
Our attorneys can help you determine whether you are eligible for widow or widower benefits under the SSD system. We can also explore your eligibility for various other federal disability benefit programs.
Pursuing the Benefits Your Spouse Paid For
If your spouse paid into the Social Security system for years, you have every right to the benefits he or she paid for. Our firm can represent you throughout the process, from the initial application through any appeals that may be necessary if you are initially denied benefits.
We understand how confusing the Social Security system can be. We will take the stress off your shoulders and do whatever it takes to obtain the benefits you deserve. At The Law Offices of Kenneth Hiller, PLLC, we guide clients in Buffalo New York in all aspects of the Social Security disability application process. Contact us for a free consultation with an experienced disability benefits lawyer.