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Stephanie O Joy, Esq
Stephanie O Joy, Esq, Soc. Sec. Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 13281
Experience:  19+ years legal exp. - 10+ years owning/operating her own SSD Law practice.
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I am a 66 yr old retired female. I stated to receive social

Customer Question

I am a 66 yr old retired female. I stated to receive social security in 2011. Because I worked for the post office my benefit was an offset which decreased my benefits. My husband passed away in June. I applied for his social security and was denied. I understood if I did not claim my social security benefit I could claim his. Is this correct? Should I pursue this? What other forms do I need to fill out.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon. With regard to your post:

"I am a 66 yr old retired female. I stated to receive social security in 2011.----- OK, you filed "early", opting for a smaller amount.

"Because I worked for the post office my benefit was an offset which decreased my benefits. ----- Do you mean you were currently working and so subject to earnings limit with associated offset OR, do you mean you had a government pension based on that PO work.

Also, did you pay SS taxes on your PO work earnings all those years?

"My husband passed away in June. ----- I am so sorry.

"I applied for his social security and was denied.-------- Do you know why?

"I understood if I did not claim my social security benefit I could claim his. Is this correct? ------- Generally, but there are other provisions. For instance, if you have your OWN federal retirement benefit, then like a person with their OWN SS, they can't collect both their own or their spouse's or survivor benefit based on spouse's work record. The GPO (government pension offset) is the law that similarly prevents a federally retired individual from collecting those 2 benefits - basically, the rule is one government retirement benefit per person be it SS or federal pension.

"Should I pursue this? What other forms do I need to fill out. ------ If you are getting a federal pension from the PO, then you can determine if you are eligible for survivor benefit this way: multiply your federal pension by 2/3. Subtract that number from the gross, "would - be", survivor benefit (your husband's amount, basically) - anything left over you will be paid as an SS survivor benefit. It the remainder is zero or a negative number, there is nothing for you to collect.

Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 1 year ago.

I hope this helps! My goal is to provide you with excellent and accurate service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions.

Kindly rate me "excellent" when you are done. I look forward to assisting you in the future, should you have legal questions. Be sure to start future posts with "To ***** Esq., ONLY" if you want me to specifically answer it.

Sincerely, ***** ***** Joy, Esq.

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Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 11 months ago.

Hello again. It is month end -Please, if you haven't yet had the opportunity to do either of the items below, I ask that you do so now, because itis the only way I can receive credit for time spent with you. Please:

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If there's more I can do, please use the reply tab and let me know how I canbe of further assistance. It's my goal to provide you with excellent service- to make sure I answered the question you asked about. Please rate mehighly and provide me with feedback. And thanks for understanding how we receivecredit from the Site for contributing our time here!

Sincerely,

StephanieO. Joy, Esq. – Your Online Legal Professional

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