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Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 12956
Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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My husband would have been eligible for social security had

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My husband would have been eligible for social security had he lived. He died at age 60 in Sept. 2011. I was 62 then and still working and I was told that I could not get survivor benefits. In Jan., 2013, I had to go on Disability through American Fidelity which I paid into for 19 years, but it was not enough to maintain life. So, in April, I retired from the school district in order to get more money. It is not enough and I am now facing foreclosure on our home. I also have another large debt that I have not been able to pay since January, so my credit score has dropped into the 500s. I have looked into rentals, but after my credit score dropped 200 points, no one will even consider me as a renter. I live in Nevada, and was told about the "windfall law". Does that apply toward my ability to receive survivor benefits??? I am 64 3/4 yrs old and retired and am about to lose it all. Please tell me where I can get help. Thank you. Mary
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. Kindly use CONTINUE or REPLY button to ask for clarification or follow-up questions.



My husband would have been eligible for social security had he lived. He died at age 60 in Sept. 2011. I was 62 then and still working and I was told that I could not get survivor benefits. In Jan., 2013, I had to go on Disability through American Fidelity which I paid into for 19 years, but it was not enough to maintain life. So, in April, I retired from the school district in order to get more money. It is not enough and I am now facing foreclosure on our home. I also have another large debt that I have not been able to pay since January, so my credit score has dropped into the 500s. I have looked into rentals, but after my credit score dropped 200 points, no one will even consider me as a renter. I live in Nevada, and was told about the "windfall law". Does that apply toward my ability to receive survivor benefits??? I am 64 3/4 yrs old and retired and am about to lose it all. Please tell me where I can get help. Thank you. Mary

Response: Hello Mary: WEP would not apply to survivor benefits, but may be subject to government pension offset (”GPO”) if you are receiving pension based on work where you did no pay into Social Security system such a state or local government job. Generally, your Social Security benefits as a spouse, widow or widower will not be reduced if you:

  • Are receiving a government pension that is not based on your earnings; or
  • Are a federal (including Civil Service Offset), state or local government employee whose government pension is based on a job where you were paying Social Security taxes; and
    • you filed an application for benefits before April 1, 2004; or
    • your last day of employment (that your pension is based on) is before July 1, 2004; or
    • you paid Social Security taxes on your earnings during the last five years of government service. (Under certain conditions, fewer than five years may be required for people whose last day of employment falls after June 30, 2004, and before March 2, 2009..."

http://www.ssa.gov/gpo-wep/

http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10007.html

http://www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/10045.html

Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 12956
Experience: B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
Phillips Esq. and 2 other Social Security Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

 


I worked as a state employee for 19 years in NV. and I did not pay social security. I receive PERS state pension benefits since retiring in April, 2013. My deceased husband, however, was entitled to full SSI benefits. All I want is my spousal survivor benefits and I keep being told that in Nevada, we are subject o the "windfall" law.


I appreciate you fine-tuned answer, but I DO NOT UNDERSTAND and I have 2 MA degrees. So, PLEASE spell it out for me and tell me:


 


Am I entitled to spousal benefits now or ever?


 


Who or where should I contact to try to get his SSI.?


 


Should I get an attorney here? If so, who?

Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 1 year ago.

I worked as a state employee for 19 years in NV. and I did not pay social security. I receive PERS state pension benefits since retiring in April, 2013. My deceased husband, however, was entitled to full SSI benefits. All I want is my spousal survivor benefits and I keep being told that in Nevada, we are subject o the "windfall" law.

Response 1: You would be subject to Windfall Elimination Provision on your own Social Security Retirement Benefits when you start to receive the benefits because you did not contribute to Social Security system, but not on your Survivor benefits based on the earnings of your late husband.

I appreciate you fine-tuned answer, but I DO NOT UNDERSTAND and I have 2 MA degrees. So, PLEASE spell it out for me and tell me:

Am I entitled to spousal benefits now or ever?

Response 2: You are entitled to spousal benefits because your husband contributed enough to the Social Security system for you to be eligible. For more information, click on the link below:

http://www.ssa.gov/survivorplan/ifyou5.htm

Who or where should I contact to try to get his SSI.?

Response 3: You mean your Survivor benefits? SSI is a different program for people who did not work long enough to receive disability benefits but are in need. This does not apply to you since your late husband worked long enough to qualify for retirement benefits. Here is information on how to apply for Survivor benefits:

http://www.ssa.gov/pgm/survivors.htm

Should I get an attorney here? If so, who?

Response 4: You can do this on your own.

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