SSR 77-23: SECTION 216(h)(3)(C)(i)(I) (42 U.S.C. 416(h)(3)(C)(i)(I)). -- CHILD'S INSURANCE BENEFITS -- ACKNOWLEDGEMENT IN WRITING ON AGREEMENT TO SUPPORT

20 CFR 404.1101(e)(3)

SSR 77-23

Held, an agreement to support a child in itself is not necessarily an acknowledgement in writing within the meaning of section 216(h)(3)(C)(i)(I) of the Social Security Act, since such an agreement may be based on considerations other than the parent-child relationship. However, where the evidence establishes that the wage earner was acknowledging the child as his son or daughter by an agreement to support, such an agreement is sufficient acknowledgment in writing.

A question has been raised as to whether an agreement to support a child when able may be construed as effective written acknowledgment of that child within the meaning of section 216(h)(3)(C)(i)(I) of the Social Security Act.

Section 216(h)(3)(C)(i)(I) of the Social Security Act provides that a claimant shall be deemed to be the child of a deceased wage earner if the wage earner had acknowledged in writing that the claimant is his son or daughter.

Neither the Act nor the Regulations (20 C.F.R. ยง 404.1101(e)(3)) requires that the acknowledgment be executed as a separate document. Any statement written by the wage earner or at his direction which acknowledges the claimant as the wage earner's son or daughter is a sufficient acknowledgment in writing to satisfy the statutory requirement. In the case of an agreement to support a child, however, the support agreement in itself is not necessarily an acknowledgment since such an agreement may be based on considerations other than the parent-child relationship. l However, where the evidence establishes that the wage earner was acknowledging the child as his son or daughter by an agreement to support, such an agreement is sufficient acknowledgment in writing within the meaning of section 216(h)(3)(C)(i)(I).


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