Being married can benefit you financially as well as emotionally, particularly when it comes to Social Security. You may still be eligible for spousal Social Security benefits even if you are ineligible for benefits from Social Security because you never worked or didn’t work enough.
If your ex receives their own benefits, you may still be eligible for spousal benefits even if you are divorced. Up to 50% of the retirement benefits of their spouses are available to eligible Americans. Additionally, the payment of benefits will not affect the benefits of the other spouse in any way.
Therefore, understanding how spousal social security benefits work is crucial for married couples. The other spouse must meet the following requirements in order to be eligible for spousal social security benefits:
How Can an Ex-Spouse Get Spousal Benefits? If they meet the following requirements, an ex-spouse can get spousal benefits:
You can apply for benefits as early as age 60 if your ex-spouse has passed away and you are not married. The spousal Social Security benefits rules for same-sex spouses are the same as those for opposite-sex spouses. However, you can be qualified for payments as early as age 50 if you become handicapped within seven years of your ex-spouse’s passing. The Supreme Court made a decision in favor of same-sex marriage in 2015, opening the door for the same-sex spouse to also be eligible for spousal benefits.
The spouse benefits for same-sex spouses were only available in states that recognized same-sex marriage prior to this decision. How Age Affects Spousal Social Security Benefits If your spouse applies for benefits before reaching full retirement age, their benefits will be reduced. Therefore, your benefits will be reduced even if you claim spousal benefits before reaching full retirement age.
For instance, if a person is 66 when they reach full retirement age, their spousal benefits will be reduced as follows:
It is important to note that 62 is the minimum age to claim retirement. How to Apply for Spousal Social Security Benefits You can use the SSA’s (BEST) to determine whether or not you qualify for spousal benefits. In such a situation, you will only receive 32.5% of your spouse’s benefit, according to the Social Security Administration.
You can easily apply for spousal benefits online by going to ssa.gov. The system will automatically determine your eligibility for spousal benefits after you submit the necessary information.
When you apply for spousal benefits, the following information must be prepared:
Important Information to Keep in Mind Before Applying for Spousal Benefits: