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Question US Spousal Survivor Benefits

Discussion in 'Expat Section' started by PatO, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. PatO

    PatO DI Forum Luminary Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer Veteran Marines

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    A very complicated and hard to understand policy is whether or not a US citizen's surviving spouse can receive survivor social security benefits if she is a non-US citizen and not living in the US but has a child from the deceased who is a US citizen under age 18 living with her. Also, there is a statement saying the surviving spouse can apply for immediate permanent US residency but does not say if the survivor must be living in the US in order to apply.
    There are not many of us US seniors here with similar family situations so I doubt anyone has been through this but if anyone is going to the Manual SSA could you please investigate.

     
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    Post #5 by okiebound, Dec 20, 2016 (4 points)
  3. knobhead

    knobhead The Knobster Infamous

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    A representative from the SSA office in Manila came here in November. I met with him to signup my children for SS dependent payments. Your children will get a check from SSA equaling half of your monthly check. They will split that into how many kids you have. Example : if your monthly check is 1,000 your kids will split 500. Your kids become the survivors upon your death and they will get survivors benefits payments. Your wife will have to go to the USA and live there and qualify for a USA SS number. Since your kids are minors they can not get a bank account on their own but your wife can open one with her named as the signee. your kids SS payments will be direct deposited in their accounts and your wife can access the money to pay for their support. 80% of the money has to be spent on the direct support of the children. I hope this helps. There is also a Warden from the US embassy here in Dumaguete who was trained by the SSA and embassy to help you with these matters.
     
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  4. Charlie

    Charlie DI Senior Member Restricted Account Veteran Coast Guard

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    Code of Federal Regulations § 404.460

    Pat, see if this link above helps. It's a lot of reading but it may answer your question. If all else fails you can call the gals in Manila. I did that once several years ago and got an answer to my question.
    Things seem to change over time so in a few years who knows what the rules at that time will be.
     
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  5. redhorse

    redhorse DI Forum Adept

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    PatO, regarding your second question, based on my interpretation of what's on the page I linked, I'd say she WOULDN'T have to be in the US to apply for residency. It specifically breaks down the residency (green card) application process for a widow(er) of a US citizen to "If You Live in the United States" OR "If You Live Outside of the United States". The filing by a widow(er) must be within two years of the US citizen spouse's death.
    Widow(er)
     
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  6. okiebound

    okiebound DI Forum Adept Showcase Reviewer

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    Best Answer
    I can speak from experience here.....each child can receive up to 50% of the worker's benefit. So,
    EACH child could receive $500, but there is a cap on a household total they can receive, up to 180% of the worker's benefit (that is then divided between the children). A single child might receive more than $500 (it depends on the worker's SS benefit amount). Anyone caring for a worker's child that is under age 18 can receive benefits until the child(ren) is 16 (if the guardian is under retirement age). If the guardian is of retirement age, they can continue their benefits after that, if they choose. The child(ren) can receive benefits until age 18, unless still enrolled in a secondary school, then they can receive benefits until 2 months after they turn 19 or have graduated high school (whichever occurs first).
    As far as the surviving spouse's residency requirement....I didn't have to deal with this, but it seems that the non-US citizen survivor is going to have to meet 5 year residency requirements. I am including the link to the SSA gov website addressing this issue. I highly encourage you to use the SSA website for any of these questions. I found that when I was faced with these similar questions that other websites and word-of-mouth advice were not current, however, you can find the most up-to-date info directly from the horses mouth.

    SSA - POMS: RS 02610.025 - 5 Year Residency Requirement for Alien Dependents/Survivors Outside the United States (U.S.) - 01/06/2012
     
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  7. yvonnecapunong

    yvonnecapunong DI Junior Member

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    IF YOU DON'T MIND FELLOW DI: What if the kids biological father is a filipino(deceased) however when the kids was 3 yrs old an American Acknowledge the kid and signed the papers is our local registrar that he acknowledge as the father on the child. Will the kid still get benefits if he passed away (GOD FORBID). The mother of the child is not married to the American since he is not divorced. Will the child still get the rights just like the natural born child !? i will be happy if you can help me
     
  8. knobhead

    knobhead The Knobster Infamous

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    I suggest you contact the following US embassy Warden he is trained and authorized by S.S.A and the Embassy to answer your questions and help you get your entitled benefits

    William Stohlton

    U.S. Warden at U.S. Embassy

    william_stohlton@yahoo.com

    09107772605 mobile

    P.O. Box 375, Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental 6200, Philippines
     
  9. Rye83

    Rye83 with pastrami Admin Secured Account Highly Rated Poster SC Connoisseur Veteran Army

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    Is signing papers that he "acknowledges" himself as the father the same as a legal adoption? (I personally doubt it is but who knows.) I'd say for any possible chance of getting benefits from the USG it would need to be a legal adoption that went through all the proper government bureaucracy. Some paper/contract made up between a couple is probably not going to be worth the paper it was written on.
     
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  10. Dave & Imp

    Dave & Imp DI Forum Patron Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer

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    I was under the impression that to receive benefits, the natural father/Mother has to be a US Citizen, and even sometimes DNA results were required. Anyone has knowledge on this?

    There use to be a lots of immigration fraud regarding claiming children (cousins, neighbors anyone wanting to migrate to the US) for immigration, I am not sure about benefits but I would also assume it was problem. Is my thinking correct or incorrect.
     
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    PatO

    PatO DI Forum Luminary Highly Rated Poster Showcase Reviewer Veteran Marines

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    The child would have to first apply for U.S. citizenship, which itself is a rigorous process and doubtful approval would be forthcoming, and a prerequisite for applying for social security benefits.
     
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