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Stephanie O Joy, Esq
Stephanie O Joy, Esq, Soc. Sec. Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 13266
Experience:  19+ years legal exp. - 10+ years owning/operating her own SSD Law practice.
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I'm the divorced father of two minor girls living with their

Customer Question

I'm the divorced father of two minor girls living with their mom. I recently received SSI and was told my girls could receive SS payments from me. Can I control the accounts for the girls or do I have to turn over control to custodial parent/mom?
We have mutual custody.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Good afternoon,

I'm Doug, and I'm sorry to hear of the confusion. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. In order to give you a clear and concise answer, I will need some additional information about the circumstances, please.

1. Do you really mean SSI---which is a welfare payment, or do you mean you receive a social security retirement or disability benefit?

2. What state is the child support order out of?

3. What state do the children live in?

4. How much child support do you pay monthly?


Customer: replied 7 months ago.
SS said I was disabled, qualified for SI, and my kids could receive payments too.This has nothing to do with child support.
The divorce has no child support since I gave my wife everything.I live in Washington.
The kids live in Michigan w mom.
We have mutual custody.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Are you getting SSI (welfare) or SSDI (social security disability that you earned through payment of taxes)?

And it may well have something to do with child support. You are saying that the court NEVER ordered that you pay child support for your children?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Now I'm confused. The SS rep said I was entitled to an increased SS payment due my disability. She said I was approved and they would increase my SS benefits and kids could receive payments too.No child care in divorce order. I gave mom 100% of all family assets. I'm disabled.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

Well, it really is a straightforward question. You are either receiving SSI (welfare) or you are getting SSDI.

Lets try it this way. Did you have to provide a bunch of documents showing that you have less than $2000 in money and assets as well as being disabled?

How much money are you going to be receiving monthly from your benefit?


Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Nevermind. Thanks any ways.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 7 months ago.

I am unable to further assist you in this matter, and I am going to opt out of your question and open this up for other professionals.

Your question is being placed back in the question list for other professionals to see, and to respond to. You do not have to stay online for the question to be active. Should another professional pick it up, you should be alerted by email unless you actively disable this feature.

There is no need for you to reply at this time as this may "lock" your question back to me, thus inadvertently delaying other professionals' access to it.

I apologize for any inconvenience and wish you well in your future.


Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 7 months ago.

Hi Zeyn, I see that my colleague has opted out and I think I can assist you, so I am going to try to do that, OK?

My name is***** and I am a social security attorney in my private practice – that is ALL I do. Please let me know that my post here is coming through for you by typing a quick reply.

With regard to your post:

"I'm the divorced father of two minor girls living with their mom. ------ OK, residential day to day care is with mom, visitation to you, although you have joint legal custody.

"I recently received SSI ------- OK, as Doug sought to point out, if you get SSI (Supplemental Security Income) there is no benefit payable to any of your children based on your SSI. SSI is pure unearned welfare.

That is why I must presume, unless you tell me otherwise, that you were a worker, paid social security taxes most of your life, and when you became disabled, you had an insured status for Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits. That is my hope. And since an SSA staffer said your children would get auxiliary benefit for their support based on your record, then yes, SSDIB it is.

"and was told my girls could receive SS payments from me. -------- Not "from" you, but an eligibility in their own legal right, based on your disabled status and prior work record.

"Can I control the accounts for the girls or do I have to turn over control to custodial parent/mom? ------ Because you do not care for their day to day survival needs, and the other parent does, short of that other parent being proven unfit to handle their moneys for their needs, she will be the chosen "Representative Payee" for the children. The SSA does it this way because you being far away can not use the money to put food on their table, go to the store for their needs, make sure they have fitting clothing, give them lunch money, sign them up and take them to sports functions, extra curriculars, etc. The money is first to be used for meeting their basic needs. Since there is currently only one parent financially supporting them, since you indicate you weren't ordered to pay child support (which is unusual and may change if you JUST started having income again via SSDIB), then it is possible that things are tight for those little girls. Fortunately, your hard work will help them now (although I am sorry about the disability), so even if you feel you can not pay a bit in support, at least you know you ARE causing them to be supported more than before. And again, since you can't physically be there day to day to use the money for them, you would not make an ideal RP and the SSA will not have your as RP, barring unusual circumstance.

Note that if your ex decides that your new income is enough reason for her to seek child support when she refrained before, you will want to make sure the auxiliary benefits to the kids is put in to the equation. OFten times, the auxiliary payments will be given full credit, and if that amount meets what your state child support guidelines order should be paid on your current disability income, you can potentially not have to pay any additional child support unlike a similarly incomed parent who does not have the auxiliary insurance coverage.

I hope this explains - and feel free to ask for clarification is any thing is unclear.

Expert:  Stephanie O Joy, Esq replied 7 months 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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