Does a funeral home report a death to social security?
Post by: Webb & Stephens Funeral Home Staff

Reporting a person’s death to social security is an important step.

In most cases, when a loved one passes away, the funeral home reports the death to the Social Security Administration. When you meet with a funeral director following the death of a loved one, they will ask for the deceased’s name and social security number. After this, they will typically input that information into a system that connects to Social Security.

It is important for families to make sure that the name and social security number given to the funeral home match what is in the social security system. If they don’t match, the system will kick back the request to the funeral home which will likely cause a delay in benefits.  This is also why it is a good idea to keep a copy of your loved one’s social security cards in a safe place so that it can be accessed in times like these.

It is important to know that while the funeral home will most likely report the death to Social Security, there are still several reasons why you will want to contact the agency yourself.

One reason to contact Social Security is to receive the "burial benefit.” When someone passes away, there is typically a $255 death benefit available from Social Security. This is a one-time lump-sum available to the surviving spouse or a child if there is no surviving spouse. There are some restrictions on who can receive the benefit, however. Keep in mind that you must apply for the benefit; it is not automatic. It is also important to know that the funeral home does not apply for this benefit on your behalf. To apply you will either need to call the national service line or your local Social Security office.

You may also be eligible for other monthly benefits, but this will depend on your relationship to the deceased as well as their prior work history. Once again, you will need to contact Social Security to find out what benefits you may be eligible for.

It is also possible that you may be required to return the deceased’s last Social Security check, so that is an important question to ask the Social Security office.

For more information, or if you have any questions, you can ask your funeral director or contact the Social Security Administration by phone or fax.


Posted by

Webb & Stephens Funeral Homes (North)

Webb & Stephens Funeral Home Staff



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