Eligibility for Social Security Survivor Insurance?

My boyfriend died two years ago, and today I was told I could get an income check for my daughter. That would be great to help pay for her school. Now my question is, he wasn't her biological father, but was on her birth certificate. He was aware he wasn't her biological father. He signed the papers willingly and raised her for the first year before he died. Am I able to collect if he's not biological? Her biological dad is barely in the picture. Can someone explain this to me?


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October 6, 20170 found this helpful
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If he is stated as being the father on the birth certificate then legally he is going to be presumed as the father. The biological father would have to take you to court and submit dna for paternity to be questioned at this point. My daughter received survivor benefits, her father died when she was 2 months old and we were unmarried. He was listed on her birth certificate but that's all the proof I had. I would apply as soon as possible they may even pay benefits going all the way back to the month he passed away they did with ours. I wouldn't even mention the biological father because legally he would have to establish paternity in a court so that the court could make him financially responsible, as of now the financial responsible parents are you and sadly her dad who passed away that's how it's registered to the state according to her birth certificate.


That is what survivor benefits are for. He paid in to social security and it was his intentions to raise and be financially responsible for your daughter it's only right that after his death she be able to still be financially stable, and that's alot harder for 1 parent then 2. Best of luck

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October 5, 20170 found this helpful

It is always best to get answers from your Social Security Agency as that way you can be sure you have the correct answers.

  • I do not know who gave you this information but in all probability they do not know how the SS survivor benefits work.
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  • If he was not the biological father or if he did not legally adopt your daughter then most likely she will not be eligible for benefits under his name.
  • You should go to the SSA and present your case so that you know where you legally stand.
  • You will need SS numbers for yourself, your daughter, her birth certificate, and death certificate/SS number of the deceased.
  • This is the only way you will know for sure if your daughter is eligible for benefits.
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October 6, 20170 found this helpful

It can be a biological child,step child,or an adopted child who can receive benefits.

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October 6, 20170 found this helpful

SSA has rules and regulations as to whom is eligible for survivor benefits.

  • You were not married, yet he put his name on your child's birth certificate. This will be up to SSA to determine if your child is eligible or not.
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  • Did he declare her on his income tax as supporting her? This is yet another way to determine if she will will eligible or not.
  • Did he leave her or name her as a beneficiary in any documents for work or death? This is also another way for her to be eligible, but SSA will also determine if she is or not.
  • The only way to actually find out if your daughter is eligible or not for SSA is to go to the office.
  • If you have any of his tax records, insurance documents naming your daughter as benificary, or prrof he supported her then take them with you.
  • Also take her SSN, yours, and his with you.
  • You will also need her birth certificate.
  • He put his name on her birth certificate, but did he legally adopt her? This is also important and SSA will ask you about this.
  • Please make an appointment with your local office of SSA and take as much proof as possible with you when you go. They will be the only one who can determine if your daughter is eligible or not for survivor benefits.
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