Social security benefits—Payment to survivors or department of social and health services—Effect.
(1) If not less than thirty days after the death of an individual entitled at the time of death to a monthly benefit or benefits under Title II of the social security act, all or part of the amount of such benefit or benefits, not in excess of one thousand dollars, is paid by the United States to (a) the surviving spouse, (b) one or more of the deceased's children, or descendants of his or her deceased children, (c) the secretary of social and health services if the decedent was a resident of a state institution at the date of death and liable for the cost of his or her care in an amount at least as large as the amount of such benefits, (d) the deceased's father or mother, or (e) the deceased's brother or sister, preference being given in the order named if more than one request for payment shall have been made by or for such individuals, such payment shall be deemed to be a payment to the legal representative of the decedent and shall constitute a full discharge and release from any further claim for such payment to the same extent as if such payment had been made to an executor or administrator of the decedent's estate.
(2) The provisions of subsection (1) of this section shall apply only if an affidavit has been made and filed with the United States department of health, education, and welfare by the surviving spouse or other relative by whom or on whose behalf request for payment is made and such affidavit shows (a) the date of death of the deceased, (b) the relationship of the affiant to the deceased, (c) that no executor or administrator for the deceased has qualified or been appointed, nor to the affiant's knowledge is administration of the deceased's estate contemplated, and (d) that, to the affiant's knowledge, there exists at the time of the filing of such affidavit, no relative of a closer degree of kindred to the deceased than the affiant: PROVIDED, That the affidavit filed by the secretary of social and health services shall meet the requirements of (a) and (c) of this subsection and, in addition, show that the decedent left no known surviving spouse or children and died while a resident of a state institution at the date of death and liable for the cost of his or her care in an amount at least as large as the amount of such benefits.
[2010 c 8 § 2056; 1979 c 141 § 12; 1967 c 175 § 2.]
Effective date—1967 c 175:
"This 1967 amendatory act shall take effect and be in force on and after the first day of July, 1967, in conformity with the terms and provisions of section 11.99.010, chapter 145, Laws of 1965 and RCW 11.99.010
." [1967 c 175 § 3.]
Construction—Chapter applicable to state registered domestic partnerships—2009 c 521.
For the purposes of this chapter, the terms spouse, marriage, marital, husband, wife, widow, widower, next of kin, and family shall be interpreted as applying equally to state registered domestic partnerships or individuals in state registered domestic partnerships as well as to marital relationships and married persons, and references to dissolution of marriage shall apply equally to state registered domestic partnerships that have been terminated, dissolved, or invalidated, to the extent that such interpretation does not conflict with federal law. Where necessary to implement chapter 521, Laws of 2009, gender-specific terms such as husband and wife used in any statute, rule, or other law shall be construed to be gender neutral, and applicable to individuals in state registered domestic partnerships.
[2009 c 521 § 33.]