Whittier Widow Hazel Brooks vs. Social Security Administration: 70 year old widow stands to lose everything – maybe even become homeless – because of one day. Social Security Administration’s regulations require that a couple be married for at least 9 months for the surviving spouse to qualify for death benefits and the Social Security benefits of the diseased. In the case of Floyd and Hazel Brooks, their marriage – they lived like a husband and wife for 11 years! – fell one day short!
The widow, devastated by the loss of her husband, is suffering enough without the bureaucratic red tape. (In times of so many couples living as common law spouses, the regulation itself seems hopelessly outdated!) Hazel still has a chance to appeal the Social Security Administration’s decision, however her bills are mounting, she’s facing foreclosure, and she needs help, NOW.
A friend set a GoFundMe page to help the stricken widow.
UPDATE: Common sense prevailed, Social Security Administration recognized Hazel Brooks’ right to surviving spouse benefits on appeal. Thank you Social Security Administration! Congratulations Mrs. Brooks!
Hopefully between the Social Security payments and the funds raised on GoFundMe, Mrs. Hazel Brooks will be able to reclaim her life. Even though you are mourning the loss of your husband, take heart Mrs. Brooks, people care!
Anything L.A. Magazine’s Editor / E. Elrich