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Social Security Death Case Index
 
The Social Security Death Case Index is a huge database containing vital information for more than 64 million people (primarily Americans) whose death case were reported to the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA). Death case included in this index may have been included by a survivor requesting benefits or in order to stop Social Security Benefits to the deceased. Most of the information (about 98%) included in this index is from 1962-1988, although some data is from as early as 1937. The reason for this is that 1962 is they year that the SSA began to use a computer database for processing requests for benefits. Many of the earlier records have never been added to this computerized database.

Social Security Death Case Index also included in the millions of records is approximately 400,000 railroad retirement records from the early 1900s to 1950s. These begin with numbers in the 700-728 range.

The Social Security Death Case Index is maintained by the Social Security Administration and is accessible at FamilySearch, Genealogy.com, Family Tree Maker and Ancestry.com.

The Social Security Death Case Index contains the names of over 55 million Social Security cardholders who have passed away. Type in a name and state of residence of an ancestor, and the database will give you the birth and death dates.

Approximately one-half billion dollars in Social Security benefit checks go unnegotiated each year. Heirs of decedents who have left behind unclaimed assets and unclaimed benefits make up the largest group of individual have owed money and property. Most family members do not know they are entitled to receive funds, as financial records are often incomplete or missing at the time of death. There is no time limit concerning a request to reissue a lost or uncashed check, but no effort is made to locate and/or notify owners.

The Social Security Death Case Index contains important several important bits of information case on 72 million persons whose death case are on file with the Social Security Administration, including: social security number, date of issuance, state of issuance, date of birth, date of death, last known residence, and payment of final benefit. The index includes names of virtually all individuals deceased after 1962, the first full year records were computerized. Also included are the names of legal aliens with social security numbers, and some 400,000 railroad retirees, who may be entitled to collect Railroad Retirement Board pensions and benefits.

With a Social Security number heirs can obtain the decedent's Social Security application and claim case file, which details birth place, parents’ names, and where the lump-sum death distribution beneficiary lived. Knowing the Social Security number of a deceased relative is often necessary to conduct an effective unclaimed asset search, and is necessary when making a claim case.
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