Can I Appeal Social Security's Decision To Stop My Benefits?

Category: 
Dec 4 2019 - 9:37am

Hello, I have been receiving benefits from my deceased father for over two years now but my income has reverently stopped and I have discovered it is because after 2 months of being 19 my benefits will stop. When I applied for these benefits no one had told me this information or that after a certain amount of time after being 19 that I am not eligible for these checks anymore and was told that they had sent me a letter but I have received nothing. I have contacted my local office to see if there’s anything to do because I was really counting on this money and now I’m out of ways to pay my bills. This is my last month of school I’ve been working really hard I don’t see why I couldn’t just have this last check. Could I appeal this decision and receive my final check because of their failure to bring this to my attention? I’d appreciate all your help, thank you.

Hi,

Social Security child benefits normally end at age 18, but they can continue until age 19 or later if the eligible child is still attending high school. If a child turns age 19 during a school year they can be paid for up to 2 months after the month they reach age 19, or through the end of the semester in which they turn age 19 depending on whether or not the school operates on a yearly or semester basis. Most high schools operate on a yearly basis, meaning that they don't require a new enrollment after each quarter or semester (https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0300205325).

You can file an appeal of Social Security's decision to terminate your benefits, but it sounds like the determination was probably correct in your case. I can't say that for sure, though, without more information. The fact that Social Security didn't notify you of the termination sooner would not be a factor, other than it might extend the time limit for filing an appeal.

The only way that child benefits can be paid beyond the age limits shown above is if a child is disabled due to an impairment that began prior to age 22. If you believe that you could be considered disabled, you may want to consider filing for childhood disability benefits (https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0300203080).

Best, Jerry