Social Security Death Index Records - SSDI
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The Social Security Administration of the United States Government has kept records since 1936. These records list some 75 million people registered for social security who have died and are included in the Social Security Death Index (SSDI). The Social Security Administration did not begin keeping records until 1936. Therefore the database contains no records of people who died before that date. As a deceased person does not have any privacy rights in the United States, the Social Security Administration will provide a copy of the Application for a Social Security Card (form SS-5) if the deceased person applied for a Social Security Number. A copy of the Application for a Social Security Card (form SS-5) can generally be provided from the US Government upon request.
This document SS-5 contains the following information;
· Person's name
· Date of Birth
· Place of Birth
· Parents' names that were given when the person applied for the number.
For further information and the costs of obtaining an SS-5 record please visit the Social Security website which can be found at http://www.ssa.gov/
From 1962 the Social Security Administration (SSA) began to use computers for processing requests for benefits. The majority of those listed in the SSDI are post 1962. A word of caution - please note that the Social Security Death Index does not contain all deceased individuals who have held Social Security Numbers. It is not a database of all deceased individuals who have received Social Security Benefits. It is a database of those people who have been reported as deceased to the SSA.
The database can be searched on the following criteria.
Social Security Number
Date of Birth
Date of Death
Last Known Residence (City, County, State)
Last Benefit (City, County, State)
The Social Security Death Index is very useful to genealogists in filling in gaps. It provides family historians with clues as to the person in question with regard to their place of residence, date of birth, date of death as well as providing the facility to request a death certificate.