Health Insurance Online
Phone Icon
Call now to speak with a Licensed agent (866) 954-1892

Insurance Type:

Taking Care of Mom and Dad: Applying for Benefits

Your parents should apply for Social Security or SSI disability benefits when they become too disabled to work and for survivors benefits when a family breadwinner dies. When your parents are thinking about retirement, they should talk to a Social Security representative in the year before the year they plan to retire. It may be to their advantage to begin receiving their retirement benefits before they actually stop working.

In most cases, your parents have already reached retirement age by the time they need your help. Still, it's important to check the basics. Do they have valid Social Security cards? Do their names appear correctly on the cards? Are these the names that they used throughout their working years?

If you are confused about Social Security and want to talk to someone before broaching the subject with your parents, you can call the toll-free number 1.800.772.1213. You also can use that number to set up an appointment to visit your local Social Security office.

When your parents file for benefits, they need to submit documents that show they are eligible, such as a birth certificate, a marriage certificate if they are applying together and their most recent W2 form (or tax return if they are self-employed).

Google Plus One