Social Security Benefits

After the loss of a loved one, you will probably have a lot of questions about Social Security benefits. We at Cremation Services of Lancaster will file a statement of death with the Social Security Administration on your family’s behalf. You will not need a certified copy of the death certificate for this filing.

The following is designed to provide you the information needed to file for your Social Security benefits to ensure payments are made in a timely fashion.

Eligibility RequirementsSS

The deceased worker must have credit for work covered by Social Security, ranging from 1.5 to 10 years depending on his or her age at death. Those who may receive monthly benefits include:

  • A widow or widower age 60 or older (age 50 if disabled), or at any age if caring for an entitled child who is under 16 or disabled
  • A divorced widow or widower age 60 or older (50 if disabled) if the marriage lasted 10 years, or if caring for an entitled child who is under 16 or disabled
  • Unmarried children up to 18 (19 if they are attending a primary or secondary school full time)
  • Children who were disabled before reaching 22, as long as they remained disabled
  • Dependent parent or parents 62 or older

Lump-Sum Death Payment

A one time payment of $255 is paid in addition to the monthly cash benefits described above. The lump-sum death payment (LSDP) is paid in the following priority order:

  • A surviving spouse who lived in the same household as the deceased person at the time of death
  • A surviving spouse eligible for or entitled to benefits for the month of death
  • A child or children eligible for or entitled to benefits for the month of death

Applying for Benefits

You must apply in order to receive benefits. You may apply at any Social Security office or, if you wish, you may apply by telephone. Just dial the toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213, between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. on regular business days and the operator will schedule an appointment for you or arrange for the local Social Security office to take your claim by telephone.

At other times and on weekends and holidays, you may leave a message and they will call you back, in most cases, the next business day.

Complete information regarding Social Security death benefits can be found here. Or call us at 717-273-6283 and we will be happy to answer your questions.