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LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 35309
Experience:  I have 30 years of legal and litigation experience, including representing clients before the U.S. Social Security Administration.
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In 2001 I experienced a catastrophic head trauma, leaving me

Customer Question

In 2001 I experienced a catastrophic head trauma, leaving me physically disabled and mentally incompetent. I have recently improved somewhat. My wife would die one and half years later from cancer. I applied for Social Security benefits. I was not informed by social security that I could begin receiving my wife's retirement upon her death. I was over 50.
I was physically disabled and mentally incompetent, I could not represent myself. I have medical proof. I had no family to represent me. I could have begun receiving my wife's retirement benefits when she died? I was unable to ask if I was entitled to benefits.
Because I was physically disabled and MENTALLY INCOMPETENT, I should be able to receive back payments from the time she died. yes? Perhaps Social Security has no responsibility to inform a competent person of this rule, however, I was severely incompetent and can prove it!
In 2002 my wife and I were told by social security, we had too much money to receive benefits. We had only a few hundred dollars in the bank. We applied for disability as a couple her cancer and my accident. That was all the money we had. We had no income. Were we not entitled to benefits?
I also have an X wife, married first. Her benefits would certainly be the higher of the three. Can I use her retirement benefits to receive benefits?
I was never informed I could begin receiving my wife's retirement, I was over 50. I was disabled and incompetent. I have applied sever times and always refuted. Because of my physical and mental disability, I could not represent myself effectively. I have medical proof. I have always been refuted.
Because my wife died one and a half years after my accident. I could have begun receiving my wife's retirement benefits upon her death. Because I was physically disabled and MENTALLY INCOMPETENT, I should be able to receive back payments from the time she died. yes?
I did not file on her retirement until age 62, I am now 64. It is fair to assume I could have been deemed incompetent for all of the last 15 years. I have not been able to work due to physical disability, mental disfunction and addiction. Until recent months, While I have recently improved, I most certainly would be deemed disabled. I should be entitled to back retirement payments from my wife's retirement?
Am I due this or any other form of payment other than my diseased wife's retirement?
Regards, *****
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  LawTalk replied 9 months ago.

Good afternoon Milton,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

You asked: Because I was physically disabled and MENTALLY INCOMPETENT, I should be able to receive back payments from the time she died. yes? Perhaps Social Security has no responsibility to inform a competent person of this rule, however, I was severely incompetent and can prove it!

Unfortunately, under social security regulations, you are not entitled to receive retroactive payments based on your eligibility for a survivor benefit. Survivor benefits are one social security benefit that regardless of reason, social security never pays this benefit retroactively.

The fact that you may have been legally incompetent at the time did not impose a special obligation on social security to tell you of your rights, nor to suggest that you file for a survivor benefit. I'm afraid that you are not entitled to any back benefits from social security based on your stated facts. I am sorry.

I understand that you may be disappointed by the Answer you received, as it was not particularly favorable to your situation. Had I been able to provide an Answer which might have given you a successful legal outcome, it would have been my pleasure to do so.

If you have additional questions, you may of course reply back to me and I will be happy to continue to assist you further until your questions have been answered to your satisfaction.

Would you please take a moment to positively rate my service to you based on the understanding of the law I provided by clicking on the rating stars---three stars or more. It is that easy. That is the way I am compensated for having helped you.

Thank you in advance. I wish you the best in your future,

Doug