Hello and thanks in advance for any insights or expertise provided.
• Father diagnosed with esophageal and bladder cancer 2009.
• Receiving SSDI and 3rd party long term care disability mid-2011.
• Father died May 2012 at 63.
• Mother (62) requested early start for social security benefits; awarded and has been receiving since Jan 2012.
• Notified SSA first week June 2012 of father’s death.
• Primary concern is determining the correct amount of social security award to my mother as surviving spouse (father made considerably more in income).
• Father was Vietnam Vet (2 tours) if this info changes any consideration.
• Are social security disability amounts awarded prior to retirement age (65) full retirement amounts or reduced amounts? From what I read, this appears to be as if full retirement benefit is awarded for disability despite being under 65.
• Will my mother be awarded survivor benefits based on the amount of my father’s SSDI or an amount based as if he took early social security?
Father current SSDI award amount: $2,000
Father projected SS ‘early’ award amount: $1,500
Mother current SS ‘early’ retirement award amount: $ 500
What could my mother expect to receive and why.
• Aren’t SSDI benefits paid in arrears? i.e. we received a May payment which would have been for April’s benefit month. SSA has stated to us in letter that they have overpaid May in the amount of my father’s benefit – obviously this does not make sense if May’s payment was for April…we were expecting this for June though.
I apologize in advance if these are rudimentary questions, I am really just trying to prepare as best as possible to discuss with SSA and could use any and all expertise.