Social Security Questions? Ask a Social Security Expert
Hi, my name is ***** ***** my goal here is to provide you with the most complete and accurate answer possible.
I am sorry to hear of the loss of your brother. Unfortunately, Social Security works like an annuity where if you or your heirs are not around to collect benefits, no one is able to collect them. I have attached a pdf file from the Social Security Administration that explains survivors' benefits that Social Security offers. A person with no wife or children means that no one will be able to collect based upon his earning record, though if he has an ex-spouse, she might be able to collect. As a brother, the only way you could collect is if he adopted you and you were his dependent. However, you would only be able to collect until you became 18 unless you became disabled before you turned 21.
Once again, I am sorry for your loss and let me know if I can clarify anything or answer any additional questions. Jonathan