Press Release

Wednesday, July 17, 2013 Mark Hinkle, Acting Press Officer
For Immediate Release press.office@ssa.gov
 

Update on the Supreme Court Decision Regarding the Defense of Marriage Act
and Its Implications for Social Security Benefits

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The President has directed the Attorney General to work with other members of his Cabinet to review the recent Supreme Court decision and determine its impact on Federal benefit programs – including benefits administered by Social Security – to ensure that we implement the decision swiftly and smoothly.

We are working with the Department of Justice to determine how the decision affects our programs, and to develop appropriate instructions for our personnel.  We encourage individuals who believe they may be eligible for Social Security benefits to apply now, to protect against the loss of any potential benefits. We will process these claims as soon as we have finalized our instructions.

Below are a few frequently asked questions to provide additional clarification:

Q1:     What should I do if I think I might be eligible for benefits?

A1:     If you think you might be eligible for benefits, we encourage you to apply right away.  Applying now will preserve your filing date, which we use to determine the start of potential benefits.

Q2:     When will SSA begin paying benefits to same sex couples?

A2:     We will move swiftly to process claims once we have finalized instructions for our personnel.