TN 61 (03-05)

GN 00204.005 Claimant Dies Before Filing/Effectuation

A. Policy - claimant dies before filing an application

1. Protective filing established

If a claimant dies before filing an application but after we receive a protective filing, someone eligible to receive the deceased claimant’s underpayment may file the application. The period in which an application can be filed is determined by the protective filing closeout period in GN 00204.012.

NOTE: A protective filing may be a written statement of intent to file (including a written statement prepared by a Social Security Administration employee such as a completed SSA-2514 (Record of Claimant's Intent to File) (or its electronic equivalent), or 800 Number Worksheet or an oral inquiry about Supplemental Security Income (SSI). See GN 00204.010 for protective filing policy and SI 00601.015 through SI 00601.025 for SSI protective filings.

2. Protective filing not established

A valid application for Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) may be filed within 3 months after the month in which the disabled individual died by someone eligible to receive the deceased claimant’s underpayment. This time period also applies to applications for disability freeze. See DI 26001.005 for the policy on disability freeze. This provision of the law does not extend to Disabled Widow’s Benefits (DWB) or Childhood Disability Benefits (CDB) or provide for a “good cause” provision for late filing.

See GN 02301.030 for who may receive a title II underpayment and SI 02101.003 for who may receive a SSI underpayment. If there is a title II underpayment and the lump sum death payment (LSDP) has not been paid, see RS 00210.001 and RS 00210.010 for instructions on issuing the LSDP.

B. Policy - claimant dies after filing but before effectuation

If the claimant dies after filing but before effectuation of the application, follow the procedures in GN 00204.005F.

C. Procedure - closing out the title ii/title xvi protective filing

1. Someone is eligible to receive the underpayment

If someone is eligible to receive the underpayment, follow the procedures in GN 00204.012 for closing out the title II protective filing and SI 00601.037 for closing out the title XVI protective filing. Also see SI 00601.040C for the SSI notice requirements.

2. Cannot locate the individual eligible to receive the underpayment

If you cannot locate the individual eligible to receive the underpayment, document the file with the attempts made to locate the individual, and send the closeout notice, addressed to the individual eligible to receive the underpayment, to the deceased claimant’s last known address.

3. No underpayment exists or no one is eligible to receive the underpayment

If no underpayment exists, e.g., the claimant dies in the first month of entitlement/eligibility, take no further action to close out the protective filing.

D. Procedure - NH appears qualified for DIB

If it appears the claimant would have qualified for DIB during the 12 months before death, or the protective filing date or that a freeze could be established and the time limitation in GN 00204.005A has not expired:

  • Obtain an application for DIB from the individual eligible to receive the underpayment. Also request medical evidence, if available, and proof of death (DI 11010.330).

  • Send the application to the Disability Determinations Service (DDS) for a disability determination.

  • If the DDS determines that the claimant was disabled, prepare a manual award and forward it to the program service center to process the underpayment. See GN 01010.220 for processing manual awards.

NOTE: If it appears the deceased claimant would have been entitled to both title II Retirement Insurance Benefits (RIB) and DIB, see RS 00615.110.