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When do disabled widow(er)'s benefits begin?

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

514. When do disabled widow(er)'s benefits begin?

The first month of your entitlement to disabled widow(er)'s benefits is the latest of the following months:

  1. If a waiting period is required, the sixth consecutive full calendar month of disability; or

  2. If a waiting period is not required, the first full calendar month of disability;

  3. The month your insured spouse died;

  4. The twelfth month before the month you applied for benefits (see §1513 for retroactivity of application); or

  5. The month you turn 50.

(See §409 for when disabled widow(er)'s benefits end.)

Last Revised: Aug. 5, 2003


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There are 2 Comments

I am currently looking at retiring due to a disabling work related injury. I know i am entitled to disability retirement from my employer if they don't find me another position, but am I able to get widow's benefit before age 60? My husband passed away in 2007 and I had planned on retiring at age 60 and drawing my widow's benefit then. This injury has changed many things and not sure what I am entitled to.

You can apply for disabled widow's benefits if you meet this criteria :

  • You are between ages 50 and 60,
  • Your condition meets the definition of disability for adults, and
  • The disability started before or within seven years of the worker's death

The SSA uses the same definition of disability for widows and widowers as we do for workers.

http://www.ssa.gov/dibplan/dqualify9.htm


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