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Jonathan Tierney
Jonathan Tierney, Certified Public Accountant
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 322
Experience:  Tax Accountant at Praxair, Inc.
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My husband was just diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and I'm

Customer Question

my husband was just diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and I'm wondering what, if any benefits I may be entitled to. I'm completely at a loss and really need guidance. We live in Massachusetts, he is 51 years, and I'm 47. We have a 25 year old daughter and a 15 year old son. The daughter has completed college and our son is currently entering his freshmen year of high school.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Jonathan Tierney replied 2 years ago.
Hi, my name is ***** ***** my goal here is to provide you with complete an accurate answer you can understand. I am sorry to hear about your husband's condition. Unfortunately, while your husband is alive, you are ineligible for Social Security benefits (except for Supplement Social Security). However, if your husband is unable to work, he may apply for for Social Security disability benefits. If your husband qualifies for Social Security benefits, he will also be able to obtain Medicare coverage. The guidelines for Social Security disability are very strict, and you can find more information on this link: It states that Social Security pays only for total disability. No benefits are payable for partial disability or for short-term disability."Disability" under Social Security is based on your inability to work. We consider you disabled under Social Security rules if:You cannot do work that you did before;We decide that you cannot adjust to other work because of your medical condition(s); andYour disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or to result in death.This is a strict definition of disability. Social Security program rules assume that working families have access to other resources to provide support during periods of short-term disabilities, including workers' compensation, insurance, savings and investments. However, if you have no other income or assets at all either or both of you could apply for Supplemental Social Insurance (SSI) and/or Medicaid in your state. You can determine if you qualify for SSI through this link: If your husband die, you may be eligible for Social Security Survivors' benefits which provides income to certain dependents of individuals of have paid into the Social Security system. You can find additional information about survivors' benefits here: I am again sorry to here about your husband's illness and I hope he can recover fully. I hope I have answered your questions. Please let me know if I can answer anything else. -Jonathan