Social Security-Special Benefits for Persons Aged 72 and Over

To assure some regular income to certain persons age 72 and over who had little or no opportunity to earn Social Security protection during their working years.

Last Known Status
Deleted 05/04/2006 (The program was initiated for those individuals born between 1896 - 1900. There are no longer any individuals that would qualify for this program.)
Program Number
Federal Agency
Types of Assistance
Direct Payments with Unrestricted Use.
Uses and Use Restrictions
Special monthly benefits are paid to eligible beneficiaries, age 72 and over. There are no restrictions on use of the benefits, although the right to future benefits is not transferable or assignable.
Tax Adjustment Act of 1966, as amended; 42 U.S.C. 427-428.
Eligibility Requirements
Applicant Eligibility
Individuals who reached age 72 before 1968 need no work credits under Social Security to be eligible for special payments. Those who reached age 72 in 1968 through 1971 need some work credits to be eligible. The amount of work credit needed increases gradually each year for people reaching age 72 in 1968 through 1971. This special benefit is not available to people who reach age 72 after 1971.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Individuals who reached age 72 before 1972. Those who reached age 72 between 1967 and 1971 must have Social Security work credits.
Proof of age is required.
Application and Award Process
Preapplication Coordination
None. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
Telephone or visit the local Social Security Office.
Award Procedure
After review of the application is completed, the applicant (or representative payee) will be notified by mail.
Applicants should apply as soon as they are eligible, as no retroactive benefits can be paid.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time
Not applicable.
Telephone or visit the local Social Security Office. The appeal process ranges from a reconsideration to a review by the Federal courts.
Not applicable.
Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula or matching requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Not applicable.
Post Assistance Requirements
Beneficiaries must notify the Social Security Office if they change their address, become eligible for a Government pension or pension amount change or receive Supplemental Security Income benefits or welfare cash benefits.
Program Accomplishments
In fiscal year 2002, the number of beneficiaries decreased to 25 by the end of the fiscal year. In fiscal year 2003, it is estimated the number of beneficiaries will decrease to 1 by the end of the year. By the end of fiscal year 2004, the number is estimated to be zero.
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Benefit Payments) These figures represent benefits actually paid, or expected to be paid. FY 02 $95,000; FY 03 est $37,000; and FY 04 est $0.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
The payment for each qualifying individual as of December 2002 was $226.80. Payments are not made for any month for which the person receives a payment under the Supplemental Security Income program. Payments are reduced by the amount of most other governmental pensions, retirement benefits, or annuities.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Code of Federal Regulations, Title 20, Parts 401, 404, and 422. "Your Social Security," and other publications are available from any Social Security Office without charge.
Information Contacts
Regional or Local Office
Consult Appendix IV of the Catalog.
Headquarters Office
Office of Public Inquiries, Room 4100, Annex, Social Security Administration, Baltimore, MD 21235. Telephone: (410) 965-2736. Use the same number for FTS.
Website Address
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals
Not applicable.
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