Reusing A Social Security Number After Someone Dies
The social security numbers of people in the USA are not reused after death, it remains their number even in death according to the Social Security Administration (SSA).
REUSING A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER AFTER SOMEONE DIES
- Social Security Numbers (SSN) in the USA are not reused after the owner's death according to the SSA. The current numbering system is capable of providing enough new numbers for many generations into the future. This implies that the SSN will still be available past 2030.
- Over 450 million SSNs have been issued. There are over a billion possible combination of the SSNs and there has not been a need for recycling of the numbers according to SSA. The SSA has a policy of not reassigning an SSN after the holder's death.
- The SSA admits that at some point, the numbers will run out and some changes will need to be made to keep up that policy may be by adding a digit to the existing range.
- Hence, even at death, the holder retains the SSN.
- Government Authorities list the SSNs because these numbers cannot ever be legally reused once a person is deceased.
- Given the current nine-digit format, there are about 1 billion possible permutations.
- The population researchers calculate that about 300 million people will require new SSN by the year 2050. Also, about 230 million native births and 68 million immigrants will need SSN including plus or minus 50 million people that may require an SSN. There are unforeseen circumstances, "such as a meteor strike or cloning boom, the current enumeration system should last nearly another century."
- Normally the deceased are made publicly available via the Social Security Death Index, and several genealogy services provide free, searchable versions of the SDDI to aid researchers (people) that may be tracing their family roots.
For this research, your research team searched beyond the Wonder standard two years range because the SSN is a concept that has been practiced in the USA for decades. We also made use of news publications to provide insight into what happens when someone in the USA with social security number dies. Our findings were corroborated by blog posts by renowned experts and publications.