How Do You Earn Survivors Benefits?

How Do You Earn Survivors Benefits?

Your Earning Report

There are several Social Security Administration programs that provide financial aid to working Americans. Workers qualify for these programs through the payment of Social Security taxes on their income. In order to qualify for Social Security benefits, they must earn a certain number of Social Security credits, which are based on the amount that they have worked. Social Security survivors benefits are based on this credit system as well.

How do Social Security Credits Work?

A lot of people don’t know how Social Security credits work – or even realize that there is even a credit-based system in place. According to the Social Security Administration, the credits are the building blocks that help to determine benefit eligibility. If you haven’t earned enough credits, Social Security doesn’t have to give you benefits.

The way that you earn credits is relatively simple. The Social Security Administration looks at the amount of money that an individual has earned on which they pay Social Security payroll taxes. For 2017, you earn a credit for every $1,300 that you earn and pay Social Security payroll taxes on and upwards of four credits a year. This amount is adjusted for inflation every year. This means that if you earn $3,000 in 2017, you’ll get two credits. But if you make $30,000, you’ll only get four credits.

The amount of credits you need to earn disability benefits and retirement benefits are clear. You need at least 40 credits to earn retirement benefits, while the credit number of disability benefits depends a lot on the age of the individual applying for disability. However, the credit system isn’t as clear cut when it comes to survivors benefits.

Social Security Survivors Benefits Credits

Although the number of credits you need for your family to receive survivors benefits does vary quite a bit depending on a number of different factors, including age, the one clear rule is that nobody needs to have more than 40 credits to qualify for any type of Social Security benefits, which means that if you have at least 40 credits, your family will be able to collect survivors benefits if you pass.

Generally speaking, the younger you are when you die, the less credits you need for your family to be able to collect survivors benefits. However, the Social Security Administration is a little more flexible when it comes to survivors benefits as well due to the fact that spouses, ex-spouses, dependent parents and dependent children may need financial assistance once the individual in question passes away.

Because of this, the Social Security Administration does often pay out survivors benefits to the children and spouses of the deceased even if they don’t have enough credits. You will still be able to get benefits if you earn six credits within three years before your death.

For more information about Social Security survivors benefits or for a free consultation, contact us 24/7 at the Social Security Disability Advocates by calling  (602) 952-3200 today.

Leave a Reply