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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    3

    Default Survivor Benefits for Child Whom is Currently in Foster Care but to Be Adopted

    I am the foster parent and soon-to-be adoptive parent of child whose birthfather passed away shortly after his birth. The child was placed with us at 7 days of age as a foster child and we have since agreed to adopt him and the birthmother's parental rights were voluntarily terminated(she asked us to adopt him). We have been in this process of adopting him for several months and expect to finalize the adoption in the next couple of months. Today I was told that the state has applied for survivor benefits for the child and they are supposedly in the works for him and he will continue to receive them after the adoption is complete. I find this incredibly unbelievable. The birthfather was in his 50's so I believe that the baby will qualify now but don't think so once the adoption is complete. Is this possible?

    I just found this on Social Security's website. I am surprised! http://ssa-custhelp.ssa.gov/app/answ...MnA1X1FQams%3D
    "Our daughter, who had two young children, passed away two years ago. Her husband is planning to remarry and his fiance wants to adopt the children after the marriage. Will the children lose the Social Security survivor's benefits that they currently receive?
    No. The adoption of a child already entitled to survivor's benefits does not terminate the child's benefits."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,423

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Child Whom is Currently in Foster Care but to Be Adopted

    It's my understanding that the Social Security Administration does not recognize "termination of parental rights" with regard to survivor's benefits. That is, a child remains eligible for survivors benefits due to the death or disability of a birth parent even if the child is subsequently adopted due to a dependency action against the surviving parent and that, accordingly, survivors benefits may be paid even after a child is adopted if the adoptive family so chooses.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Child Whom is Currently in Foster Care but to Be Adopted

    Thank you Mr Knowitall! I have been told since then that the government wants to encourage adoption not discourage by limiting benefits. It will be good for our son one day to have the nest egg in a savings account that his benefits will provide.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    California
    Posts
    724

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Child Whom is Currently in Foster Care but to Be Adopted

    If you read the rules regarding conserved funds held by a rep payee, you will realize that SSA expects you to turn over all the conserved funds to your son at age 18, (or to return to SSA to reissue to your son) whether or not you think he is responsible or if you had other plans for him. He then is free to do what he wants with the money from the survivor benefits. Not all 18 year olds make good decisions. You may want to rethink saving that money for him and instead save your own money and spend the survivor benefits on his day to day needs.

    https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0200603055

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Survivor Benefits for Child Whom is Currently in Foster Care but to Be Adopted

    Thanks Janke! We have three older daughters who are 18, 21 and 27 so I totally get what you are saying on their decisions not being great including financial decisions. My understanding is I just have to use the SS funds he receives towards his support, correct? We are actually thinking of taking our a prepaid college fund for him and making the monthly payments with that. Have to think it all through!

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