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How do I report the death of a beneficiary?

How do I report the death of a beneficiary?

A family member or other person responsible for the beneficiary's affairs should do the following:

  • Promptly notify Social Security of the beneficiary's death by calling SSA toll-free at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).
  • If monthly benefits were being paid via direct deposit, notify the bank or other financial institution of the beneficiary's death. Request that any funds received for the month of death and later be returned to Social Security as soon as possible.
  • If benefits were being paid by check, DO NOT CASH any checks received for the month in which the beneficiary died or thereafter. Return the checks to Social Security as soon as possible. To find your local Social Security office, see Social Security Office Locator section of www.socialsecurity.gov.

A one-time payment of $255 is payable to the surviving spouse if he or she was living with the beneficiary at the time of death, OR if living apart, was receiving Social Security benefits on the beneficiary's earnings record. If there is no surviving spouse, the payment is made to a child who was eligible for benefits on the beneficiary's earnings record in the month of death.

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General Medicare Information