SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home433. When Application Must Be Filed

433.1 When must you file the application for the lump-sum?

You must file the application for the lump-sum death payment within the two-year period ending with the second anniversary of the insured worker's death. The filing period may be extended under certain conditions as explained in §§1517-1519.

433.2 Who must file an application for the lump-sum payment?

You must file an application for the lump-sum death payment if:

  1. You are not entitled to wife's or husband's benefits on the deceased person's Social Security record for the month just before the month in which the insured worker died; or

  2. You are a child.

    NOTE: If more than one child is entitled to the lump-sum, each child must apply to receive his or her share of the payment.

433.3 When do you NOT need to file an application for the lump-sum?

You do not need to file an application for the lump-sum as a widow(er) if you were entitled to wife's or husband's benefits on the deceased person's Social Security record for the month just before the month in which the insured worker died.