Social Security disability benefits must be able to cover your basic needs and living expenses. Accordingly, the initial amount of benefits you receive might no longer be sufficient if your life changes in some way. In this case, your benefits could increase based on the circumstances.
The Social Security Administration explains why benefits increase for certain people. Reviewing these reasons will provide insight on the current amount of benefits you receive and whether you are eligible to receive more.
The death of a spouse or former spouse
Survivor benefits are provided to widows and widowers after the death of a spouse. If you are currently married and your spouse dies, you may be eligible to receive more benefits based on their work history. Increased benefits are also provided after the death of an ex-spouse depending on the circumstances. You can receive added benefits from an ex-spouse even if you are currently receiving another spouse’s benefits.
The death of an adult child
Adult children sometimes financially support their parents if they are unable to work and lack financial resources. If the adult child dies and has a sufficient amount of work credits to receive Social Security benefits, they can be passed on to you. To be eligible, the amount of money your adult child was providing must make up at least half of your support.
Benefits for dependent children
You can also receive benefits from a spouse on behalf of your children. In this case, the child in your care must be under the age of 16 for you to receive spouse’s benefits. You can also receive benefits for older children, provided they experienced a disabling condition prior to age 22.
The rules and regulations surrounding Social Security benefits are usually quite complex. If your benefits have been denied, or you have an eligibility question, an experienced attorney can help you make sense of the matter.