How Can I Get Assistance?

Oct 30 2017 - 10:10am

I was married to my ex-husband twice. The 2nd time for ten years. He died July 2017. I am disabled but finding it hard for Social Security to accept that. I am 56 years of age, and my ex-husband was receiving disability benefits up to the time of his death. How can I get the assistance. I am facing eviction, just lost my car to repossession on Friday, October 27, 2017. I am facing homelessness and after all those years with that man, I should not have to succumb to that terrible position. I was a housewife and mother to his children. I never created enough of a Social Security Account over the years as that housewife and later a teacher. I depleted the teacher funds, so I have nothing. I need help

Hi,

It sounds like you may qualify for disabled surviving divorced spousal benefits if you are able to establish that you meet Social Security's requirements for being considered disabled. If you've filed for those benefits and been denied, you should have appeal rights (https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10041.pdf) or you can re-apply. Although it's not required, you are permitted to hire a representative to help you with your claim and or appeal (https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10075.pdf).

If you can't qualify as being considered disabled, unless you have an eligible child in your care who is under age 16 or disabled the earliest that you could claim regular surviving divorced spousal benefits would be at age 60. And, your benefit rate will be reduced for age if you start drawing prior to your full retirement age. The applicable reduction percentage if you start drawing at age 60, or sooner on the basis of a disability, is 28.5%.

Social Security also administers a needs based program called Supplemental Security Income (SSI), but in order to qualify for SSI before age 65 you would need to meet the same disability requirement that is required for disabled surviving divorced spousal benefits.

Best, Jerry