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Thread: Worried about a friend's widow

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Worried about a friend's widow

    A close friend passed away this week. They had sold their house but it hadn't closed yet.
    He was 61, so hadn't started social security yet and was still working for the city.
    Has anyone had any experience along these lines? Would she be eligible for survivor's benefit from ss even though he didn't make it to 62?
    He was about to retire, but still working. Would his pension just go away, or would she be able to get that?
    I haven't brought these things up with her as she's still in shock.
    When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
    They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
    But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
    And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    I think it would be in her best interest to seek this information directly from SS. If you feel the need to be helpful, offer to taker her, and take a note book so you can take notes for her. I am concerned that you will get a lot of stale information and be more of a distraction than asset.

    If she and her husband had children, get on them to assist her or get their cooperation so you can do this.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Scrounge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommag View Post
    A close friend passed away this week. They had sold their house but it hadn't closed yet.
    He was 61, so hadn't started social security yet and was still working for the city.
    Has anyone had any experience along these lines? Would she be eligible for survivor's benefit from ss even though he didn't make it to 62?
    He was about to retire, but still working. Would his pension just go away, or would she be able to get that?
    I haven't brought these things up with her as she's still in shock.
    She should have life insurance on him through his work, and the HR folks there should help her through this. If you can get a look at his pay stubs, you should be able to verify that he had insurance. I'd start with the city's HR department. Then Social Security. Though I'd expect them to reach out to her.

    Bill

  4. #4
    Boolit Master


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    She should be able to draw on his SS if she is 62. His retirement is dependent upon the options he took out with it. Survivors benefits allows her entitlement to his retirement if he chose that option. Life insurance through his place of employment is common so check that out.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by wv109323 View Post
    She should be able to draw on his SS if she is 62. His retirement is dependent upon the options he took out with it. Survivors benefits allows her entitlement to his retirement if he chose that option. Life insurance through his place of employment is common so check that out.
    Not a good guess. She can’t collect his SS if he passed before he turned 62. She may be able to get it on/after the date he would have turned 62. He wasn’t eligible yet when he passed away. The above advice to go there and ask is the best advice the OP’s going to get. The SS office has all the correct answers.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I thank all of you. I never thought of the city's hr dept as I've always been self employed. I'm sure asking the ss folks is the best way to go on that question. I think she's younger than he is but I dont know.
    When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
    They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
    But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
    And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

  7. #7
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    Truly not meant to be a smart you know what answer. Every state and city has their own set of rules for retirement on the City/ State plan. The only correct (maybe) answer is the one you will get from them. we are guessing based on our experiences and our locations
    Federal is a totally different subject
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  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smoke4320 View Post
    The only correct (maybe) answer is the one you will get from them.
    Like others have mentioned, you need to go directly to the source. And even then don't automatically trust the answers given. Ask for the plan documents and verify the answers given are correct.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master Handloader109's Avatar
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    GUYS, DO NOT GIVE ADVICE IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT....PLEASE.....
    Tom mag, please have her first contact his work for info on his insurance, and any pension or retirement plans.

    THEN CONTACT SOCIAL SECURITY AS SHE QUALIFIES FOR SOME MONEY AS A SURVIVOR NO MATTER HIS OR HER AGE.....Benefit will depend on his earnings and her current work status. May be roughly 60 to 75% of his full retirement age earnings if SHE is under 60. Will be more if she is older.....

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Boolit Master Scrounge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reddog81 View Post
    Like others have mentioned, you need to go directly to the source. And even then don't automatically trust the answers given. Ask for the plan documents and verify the answers given are correct.
    Good point. Like Ronny said, "Trust, but verify!"

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    84 year olde GONRA sez listen to Handloader 109 .....

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Handloader109's Avatar
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    The reason I'm yelling, is that my wife has a friend that SHOULD have received widow's benefits for several years before she checked with SS on Her desire to retire at 62. She lost 4 or 5 years of some amount as she didn't apply.
    Always check with anyone and everyone you can in these situations. And I would suggest not to move money into and out of anything for 6 months. Get out just what you need to survive till you somewhat get past initial grief. Many bad decisions made in haste. Money can sit for a long time without any consequences. Don't buy annuities or such for a while. And DO NOT INVEST ANYTHING WITH OR THROUGH FRIENDS..... EVER

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

  13. #13
    Boolit Grand Master popper's Avatar
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    Don't buy annuities - ever!
    Whatever!

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    I managed the retirement system for a college that was on the state system. I am NOT comparing anything or giving any advice in this area.

    What I would advise is that she find someone who is reliable and understands these systems and has the time to help her. She is going to be under severe stress and her life is under major transition not to mention they were in the process of selling a house so I assume a move was planned.

    She needs a really kind and knowledgeable friend to come along side her, not guessing advice.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Also find out if he carried life insurance.
    R.D.M.

  16. #16
    Boolit Bub
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    Most likely there was life insurance, working for the City. Call HR Dept. as far as SS. She should be able to draw off his when she turns 65.
    The Soldier that Volunteers, fighting for Country and his rights,
    makes the most reliable Soldier on Earth.

  17. #17
    Boolit Grand Master Char-Gar's Avatar
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    This is the wrong place to ask such question. As stated above go to each source. I know you are anxious to get be able to give her some answers, but will take time.
    Disclaimer: The above is not holy writ. It is just my opinion based on my experience and knowledge. Your mileage may vary.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy



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    Handloader109 is right. I went through this with my mother and step dad about 8 years ago. For Social Security she is entitled to reduced if she is over the age of 60 (if she is not 60, she has to wait). She is also entitled to a one-time survivors death benefit (last time I checked it was around $250). She may be taxed on the SS income if she is working. When she reaches full retirement (65-67) she can switch over to hers if she will receive more money, if not, I suggest she wait until 70 (that is the max) then use her benefits. The Social Security people can explain all this.

    Here is a link explaining all this.

    https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10084.pdf

    As for the other part, talking to the HR Department is the best way to go. She will also need to get the death certificate asap, as most places need that for verification and to release the benefits. It is not a quick process.
    Last edited by j_dude77; 06-11-2021 at 11:55 PM.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
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    She will also want to look into continuing her health insurance, via the Cobra system.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    I appreciate everybody's responses. While this isn't the place for all the correct answers, it seems to be the place to get good advice on where to look. You guys have given me great advice.
    When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
    They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
    But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
    And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

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