Managing Your Loved One's Benefits

If you need to help your loved one manage his or her Social Security benefits, here are a few issues that you should be aware of.

If you, as the caregiver, find yourself in a position in which you are representing your loved one by dealing with the Social Security Administration on his or her behalf, you should know that:

  • Your loved one must be with you if you call the Social Security Administration so that the SSA representative can ask your loved one’s permission to speak with you concerning confidential matters.
  • Your loved one should send written consent with you if you are visiting a local branch of the SSA on his or her behalf
  • The Social Security Administration can arrange to mail benefits to a relative or identified person if he or she uses the money for the well being of the beneficiary.
  • If you have been granted power of attorney by your loved one, it does not automatically give you the right to collect your loved one’s Social Security benefits. Instead, you must be recognized as the “representative payee” by the SSA.

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