Social Security

Families often have so many questions about Social Security, it is impossible to cover them all. Therefore, you will find a link to the Social Security website at the bottom of this page to assist you in finding the answers to your questions.

Because this is one of the most frequently asked questions and does deal with federal regulations, we have reprinted the question and answer directly from the Social Security website.

How do I receive the Lump Sum Death Payment after a relative dies?

A lump-sum death benefit of $255 may be paid upon the death of a person who has worked long enough to be insured under the Social Security program. The lump-sum death benefit can be paid upon the death of the insured person even if they were not receiving retirement or disability benefits at the time of death.

This payment is limited to a spouse who was living with the worker at the time of death, to a spouse who, in the month of death, is eligible for certain Social Security benefits based on the workers record, or a child who, in the month of death, is eligible for a Social Security benefit based on the worker's record. If no spouse or child meeting these requirements exists, then the lump sum death payment will not be paid.

The lump sum death payment can no longer be paid to funeral homes for funeral expenses.

To file for the benefit, call 1-800-772-1213 and request an appointment for your local office.

To report a death of a beneficiary to Social Security, see the instructions at

The answers to many more questions about Social Security can be found at the Social Security website:

This website created and maintained by the Richards Funeral Home, Inc.