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Will my mom have to give social security money back after filing bankruptcy?

Milwaukee, WI |

My mom filed chapter 7 and already did her court appearance. She was told before that she would no longer receive social security money from my dad's passing and even gave her lawyer the letter. The other day she got another one saying she will be receiving it again. Will she have to decline it or will it be taken away?

Attorney Answers 4

  1. 11 USC 522(d)(10) FULLY exempts 100% of a right to receive a social security benefit. I am not aware of any state that does not but each states law must be looked at that governs your moms case. Thus, if she lives in a state that uses Federal Exemptions as an option she can exempt all of it IF she has lived in that state for the last 2 years. If not, then the issue is what state did she live in before that 2 years and for how long to determine which states exemptions apply to her case!

  2. Assuming she accurately noted her SS income in her BK filing, I see know reason for her SS benefit to be halted due to BK, if it is otherwise due her. It is not clear to me why it ever stopped to begin with.

    Stephanie O. Joy, Esq., of JoyDisability, is an attorney licensed in New Jersey, but currently practicing federal Social Security Disability law in all 50 states from her PA office. Answers to questions are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship, nor do they constitute legal advice. Rather, if you need representation or legal advise, you need to make direct contact yourself, and inquire. We welcome and respond to all phone calls and emails.

  3. I agree with the other answers. It does not make sense as to why it was stopped. Did she properly disclose and exempt out her social security income? Be sure to talk to her lawyer.

  4. I can't imagine who would tell her that bankruptcy would effect her exempt social security survivor's benefits in any way, for the reasons stated. Perhaps she was just told by the SSA that your father's retirement benefits were ending due to his death? That does not rule out the survivors benefit, which may have been processed later, however. Either way, however, she should promptly discuss with further with her bankruptcy lawyer and retain copies of all correspondence relating to this interruption in benefits.

    Do not assume that I am your attorney because of my response here. Call my office in Racine (262-633-3090 or email for clarifications, but short of such additional arrangements, I will not be taking any action on your case. See me on the web at, or view fifteen years of past answers at ., Also see them on AVVO answers at . Answers may contain attorney advertising materials.

    My answer here does mean that I am representing you, so be sure to consult your own attorney before deciding on what you should do.

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