The Social Security Administration (or SSA) is trying to make sure that same-sex couples in the United States of America know their social security benefits.
For decades, gay couples in America have wished for the same rights as their straight peers. Instead, they had to worry about the lack of benefits and rights like hospital visits/information, financial backing, and post-mortem support.
Thanks to 2015’s Obergefell v. Hodges however, same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states of the USA. That said, many gay couples are unaware of their rights as legally married citizens. In addition, several couples have yet to claim the benefits that they can now legally acquire.
And what benefits do same-sex couples under those categories have? The SSA is reaching out to let gay couples know.
Same-sex couples, and especially married couples, can collect spousal benefits based on their wife or husband’s work history.
In addition, any children can claim benefits from both of their legally recognized gay parents. Plus, both parents can then place their names on the child’s Social Security number record.
Also, disability benefits are available for the family if a partner becomes disabled and meets the government’s requirements.
As the SSA writes:
“One in four of today’s 20-year-olds will become disabled before they retire.”
“Disability benefits provide financial support for disabled workers and their dependents, including our wounded warriors. You can apply for Social Security disability benefits online.”
That support during the hard times continues even in death.
“The loss of a loved one can be both emotionally and financially difficult. Some widows, widowers, and children may receive survivor benefits to help them cope with the financial loss,” writes the SSA.
That said, it’s not all on the SSA as same-sex couples will need to put in effort too. Not only will same-sex couples need to apply for benefits as soon as possible, but couples also have to report on other updates like divorce or death.
“You must tell us if you get married, enter a non-marital legal relationship, or divorce because your marital status may affect your entitlement to benefits. If we stop your benefits because of marriage or remarriage, we may start them again if the marriage ends,” says the SSA.
If you are married, going to get married, or are entering a new phase after getting married, you should keep the SSA up-to-date. They will have you covered with legal benefits, so it’s only right (and responsible) to keep them in the loop.
"Social Security has always changed to meet the needs of the people we serve and will continue to help secure today and tomorrow for you and your family," said the SSA.
After you do that, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy both your relationship and your legal rights.
h/t: The SSA