Q:

What is the Social Security representative payee program?

A:

Quick Answer

The Social Security representative payee program allows someone to manage Social Security benefits for another person. The beneficiary, or the person receiving payments, must be unable to manage their own finances to be eligible for the program. For instance, parents can receive payments for disabled or minor children through the representative payee program. The Social Security payments must be used to purchase goods and services for the beneficiary, and payees must provide some documentation showing how the payments are used.

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Full Answer

In most cases, a friend or family member is chosen as the representative payee. When friends or family members aren't available, an organization is often chosen to represent the beneficiary. All representative payees are required to keep records of how the payments are spent.

Additionally, representative payees are typically required to put excess monies in a savings account for the beneficiary. A person who wishes to handle his own finances, or who wants a different representative payee, can contact the Social Security Administration for assistance.

Each representative payee is required to complete an annual accounting form to show how the beneficiary's payments are spent. The form is available online to payees over the age of 18. Representative payees under the age of 18 must complete a paper accounting form each year.

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