What is the prescribed period of the DWB?

When your loved one dies with disability benefits, there may be an option for you to still get some benefits if you are a disabled person. If someone is already disabled, the process may be straightforward. What happens if you suffer a disability after the death of your spouse? 

There is a window called the prescribed period that dictates when you may apply for the disabled widower’s benefit. 

The basics of DWB

You need to be 50 years or older, prove your relationship with your deceased spouse and prove your disability. That way you may file an application within the prescribed period. As the Social Security Administration details, the prescribed window is 84 months — or seven years. But when does that start? 

Prescribed period start times

The usual start time is the month when the loved one’s death occurs. If you get other sources of disability entitlements, this seven year span begins later. It may start the last month you got a previous entitlement to DWB or it might be your last month of entitlement to the Mother’s or Father’s Benefits. If you got these benefits when your spouse dies, you may file for a deemed entitlement to establish benefits to commence when possible. 

Prescribed period end times

Once the prescribed period begins, it ends 84 months later or it ends earlier if you reach age 60. This increases to age 65 if you file for DWB-Medicare. 

Incorrect information and timelines may affect your claim and potential benefits. Whether you are a disabled person at the time of your spouse’s death or not, there are options for you to get the support you need within the right timeframe.