In order for a survivor to be eligible for a lump sum benefit the deceased must have worked 1½ years while paying into social security. Generally the surviving spouse, or a child already receiving social security benefits may be eligible for a one time lump-sum benefit of $255.00
Other survivor benefits may be available to the following individuals:
A widow or widower at age 60 or older or any age is caring for an entitled child under the age of 16 or Disabled.
A divorced widow or widower at age 60 or older if the marriage lasted 10 years, or if caring for an Entitled child under the age of 16 or disabled.
When a death occurs Willwerscheid Funeral Home's staff file Form SSA-721, "Statement of Death by Funeral Directors". This notifies the Social Security administration that the death has occurred and to adjust monthly benefits and pay lump-sum benefits. If the deceased is receiving social security benefits, the benefits for the month in which the death occurred become void. In other words, if a person died May 29th then the check received in June needs to be returned to the Social Security Administration. That monthly benefit is not pro-rated for the part of the month that the person lived.
Individuals may contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 or online at ssa.gov.