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I’m on disability. Will my wife get my benefit when I die?


Q. I’m on Social Security disability. When I pass away, will my wife get the same monthly payment as I now receive?
— Husband

A. There are several factors that determine survivor’s benefits after someone dies.

We recommend you contact Social Security directly to see what will happen with your benefits based on your specific situation, but here’s how it works.

If your wife has or will have reached her full retirement age (FRA) per Social Security, then she will be able to collect 100% of your benefit, said Jody D’Agostini, a certified financial planner with Equitable Advisors/The Falcon Financial Group in Morristown.

This is called a widow’s or widower’s benefit, she said.

“If your wife is also disabled, they can collect as early as age 50. If she has not reached this age, then the benefit will be lower,” she said.

If the widow or widower is at their FRA, then they can collect 100% of the benefit, she said.

“If the widow or widower is between the ages of 60 and their FRA, then they will collect between 71 ½ to 99% of the amount,” she said. “If the widow or widower is caring for a child who is under the age of 16, then they can collect 75% of the benefit.”

Again, reach out to Social Security at (800) 772-1213 to go over your specific benefits.

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This story was originally published on Nov. 12, 2021. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.