From 1940 to 1960, we excluded a parent’s services performed in the employ of his
or her son or daughter (either natural, adopted, or stepchild) from coverage. After
1960, we cover such services, except for most domestic services (work within the household)
and service not in the course of the employer's trade or business. For further discussion
of the family employment exclusion, including the exception to the domestic service
exclusion in the 1967 amendments relating to domestic service a parent performs under
certain conditions for a son or daughter, see RS 01901.250. For development procedures for these cases, see RS 02101.125D. in this section.
Where the law does not specifically exclude services from coverage, the fact that
the family relationship exists does not preclude a legitimate employment relationship
between parents and their children. However, in these cases, document the file to
show that the parents rendered services in a genuine employment relationship and that
they received wages.
Work conditions and circumstances surrounding arrangements where a parent alleges
rendering services for his son or daughter may sometimes be difficult to develop,
especially when it involves agricultural work and the parties live together on the
farm. In other cases, facts that show the likelihood of a genuine employment relationship
may be a matter of field office (FO) knowledge. For example, the FO may know a father
works in his son’s hardware store because he cashes his paycheck every Friday at the
bank across the street, etc. The development required in a particular case may vary
between the extremes of these examples.
Although benefit applications request that applicants list all employers during the
current year plus the preceding two years, the applications do not specifically ask
whether their children employed applicants. When SSA identifies a family relationship
between an applicant and an employer, e.g., by relating surnames and addresses, through
FO knowledge of the particular parties involved, etc., the development guides outlined
in RS 02101.122B. through RS 02101.122C. in this section apply. In agricultural cases, develop the cases under the procedures
in RS 02101.125B. and RS 02101.125C., both in this section.