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When can a dependent grandchild or step-grandchild be considered the grandparent's "child"?

Excerpted from "Social Security Handbook". See the up-to-date, official Social Security Handbook at ssa.gov.

325. When can a dependent grandchild or step-grandchild be considered the grandparent's "child"?

A dependent grandchild or step-grandchild of the worker or spouse may qualify for benefits as a "child" if:

  1. The grandchild's natural or adoptive parents are deceased or disabled:

    1. At the time the worker became entitled to retirement or disability insurance benefits or died; or

    2. At the beginning of the worker's period of disability which continued until the worker became entitled to disability or retirement insurance benefits or died; or

  2. The grandchild was legally adopted by the worker's surviving spouse in an adoption decreed by a court of competent jurisdiction within the U.S. The grandchild's natural or adopting parent or stepparent must not have been living in the same household and making regular contributions to the child's support at the time the insured worker died.

Besides meeting the requirement in (A) or (B), the grandchild or step-grandchild must be dependent on the insured as described in § 336.

Last Revised: Feb. 6, 2003


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