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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Survivor Benefits for Son if Dad Didn't Pay Taxes

    I just got off the phone with social security. When I called last week the Texas office told me that based on the info I gave them, my 10 year old son would qualify for survivor benefits from his estranged father who passed away a few weeks ago. She also checked and told me that there were benefits available.

    They set up a phone appointment with the local office. The local office also said he qualified, but that there are no benefits available because the deceased had not reported income since 2001. She said he had 34 credits and needed 36 so my son will not get anything.

    1st question is: Why would one office take all the info and tell me there were benefits available and a 2nd one take the same info and tell me there is not? Since one of them is mistaken where can I go to get the correct answer for sure?

    2nd questions: I knew this would be a problem because the deceased was a musician and just failed to report income. Is there anything I can do to prove that he did have income that was not reported, or does it make no difference at this point? Is there simply no recourse?

    This man started procedures to sue me for visitation. I always refused to allow it because of his lifestyle. Every time I would tell him to go ahead and take me to court, he would drop the legal action probably because of his income situation. He never gave me a dime to help support my son while he was alive and it now looks like he got away without helping me even in his death. Just goes to show you. There is not two things you can't avoid. Death and taxes. Some people do successfully avoid one of those apparently.

    Thanks for any help or advice you can offer.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,010

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Son if Dad Didn't Pay Taxes

    Presumably because when you called the first time they were going off of what you told them, and when they went to verify that record they learned that your ex- had committed tax fraud and did not have enough credits to obtain Social Security.

    One approach may be to open (or reopen) his estate, and pay sufficient back taxes for prior tax years that he has sufficient credits. Consult a probate lawyer about that approach and whether it might work.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Son if Dad Didn't Pay Taxes

    Thanks for your help. Unfortunately, I was never married to my son's father and only spoke with him a few times in the last 10 years. I believe he died penniless as some local friends were trying to raise money for a cremation. I will contact an attorney when possible. Unfortunately, I understand the benefit paid out depends on how much you paid in, so I fear it might not even be worth the trouble, plus I recently paid an attorney a bunch of money to respond to his last thread to sue me for visitation and can't afford it now.

    Funny, he somehow got an attorney to send me a letter with blank financial forms and a request that I fill it all out and return it. Meanwhile, he had no money and wasn't even paying taxes. I now think he was somehow trying to latch on to my little bit of assets and money or that of my son's.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    California
    Posts
    717

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Son if Dad Didn't Pay Taxes

    1. One office made an estimate and the second office completed an application. You should get an official answer in writing on the application and the notice will tell you that you have the right to appeal.

    2. So he worked for cash, off the books for 2001-2010? Not quite sure how you'd be even able to prove to the Social Security Administration that he actually did this work. The IRS would be happy to take any taxes you want to pay but SSA may not believe that he did any work based on a tax return. Do you even have standing to file a self-employment tax return on a third party? Although I doubt you could legally file a tax return, you would still have to come up with the taxes due on this money since there is no money in the estate.

    At this point the best you can do for your son is to teach him to not be a deadbeat dad and do what his father did to another child. And to use birth control.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Son if Dad Didn't Pay Taxes

    Thanks to both of you who replied. I received a bunch of papers from SSA today which seemed to be a recap of our conversation. They did ask me to provide the legal documents that show he had launched challenges for visitation. I did send those back to them today, but I expect that is just a formality so that they can send me the letter stating that no benefits are available. As Janke said, I think I just need to get over it and move on. I am no worse off financially that I was before. I am doing my very best to teach my son responsibility. In fact, he has had TV and video games taken away tonight for not completing a class assignment on time. lol

    Addiction is a terrible thing and takes people who were once decent and turns them into monsters. That is a lesson I try to share with everyone.

    Not to be political here, but this situation had me thinking, the Fair Tax would stop people like my son's father from paying their fair share because if he could do this, there must be millions doing the same thing.

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