Domestic Diversions

Social Security benefits for divorced spouses

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This post has lots of good information. The link to the Social Security Administration–SSA.gov–leads to even more. The resources posted by the government will answer all your specific questions. Everyone’s situation is different, but the basic principles are posted by the Social Security Administration. They also have other online resources and publications, staff located throughout the country, telephone access, in-person access, etc. Go to SSA.gov and look for the materials that pertain to your specific situation. If that doesn’t help, go to http://www.ssa.gov/pgm/reach.htm and you can find out other ways to contact the Social Security Administration.
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The Social Security Administration lists the criteria for claiming a divorced spouse’s insurance benefits:
A. The worker is entitled to retirement or disability insurance benefits;
B. You have filed an application for divorced spouse’s benefits;
C. You are not entitled to a retirement or disability insurance benefit based on a primary insurance amount which equals or exceeds one-half the worker’s primary insurance amount;
D. You are age 62 or over;
E. You are not married; and
F. You were married to the worker for 10 years before the date the divorce became final.
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The divorced spouse of a worker who is not entitled to retirement or disability insurance benefits, but who has reached age 62 and is fully insured, can become independently entitled to benefits on the worker’s earnings record. To do so, however, the divorced spouse must meet the requirements in (B)-(F) above and have been divorced from the worker for not less than two continuous years.

Benefits end when either
A.The spouse dies;
B. The worker dies (in this case the spouse may be entitled to widow(er)’s, mother’s, or father’s benefits);
C. The worker’s entitlement to disability insurance benefits ends and he or she is not entitled to retirement insurance benefits (unless the divorce spouse meets the requirements for an independently entitled divorced spouse, as explained in �311);
D. The spouse is under age 62 and there no longer is a child of the worker under age 16 or disabled who is entitled to child’s insurance benefits;
E. The spouse becomes entitled to retirement or disability insurance benefits and his or her primary insurance amount is at least one-half of the worker’s primary insurance amount;
F. The spouse and the worker are divorced, unless:
1. The spouse had already turned 62 when the divorce became final; and
2. The spouse and the worker had been married for 10 years before the date the divorce became final;
G. The spouse qualified for benefits only under the conditions explained in �306, and one of the following events occurs:
1. The spouse enters into a valid marriage with someone other than the worker;
2. Prior to January 1991, monthly benefits are awarded on the same earnings record to another person who qualifies as the legal spouse of the worker under the conditions in � 306; or
3. Prior to January 1991, the spouse obtains a divorce from the worker;
H. The spouse qualified for benefits only under the conditions explained in � 306 and later learns that the marriage is invalid;
I. The divorced spouse marries someone other than the worker. However, the divorced spouse’s benefit will not be ended by marrying an individual entitled to divorced spouse’s, widow(er)’s, mother’s, father’s, or parent’s monthly benefits, or to an individual age 18 or over who is entitled to childhood disability benefits; or
J. For an independently entitled divorced spouse, the worker is no longer fully insured or he or she marries the worker.

A spouse is not entitled to spouse’s insurance benefits for the month in which any one of the above events occurs.

Remarriage affects benefits as follows:

406.1 Does the remarriage of a widower or surviving divorced spouse affect widow(er)’s benefits?
Your remarriage after age 60 does not prevent you from becoming entitled to benefits on your prior deceased spouse’s Social Security earnings record.

406.2 Does the remarriage of a disabled widower or surviving divorced spouse affect widow(er)’s benefits?
Your remarriage does not prevent you from becoming entitled to benefits on your prior deceased spouse’s Social Security earnings records as long as:

Your remarriage occurs after you turn 50; and

Your remarriage occurs after you become disabled.

Note: If you remarry before you turn 50, you will not be entitled to survivor’s benefits, unless the marriage ends.

406.3 How does remarriage of a widow(er) or a surviving divorced spouse before age 60 affect widow(er)’s benefits?
If you remarry before age 60, you will not be entitled to survivor’s benefits, unless:

Your subsequent marriage ends, whether by death, divorce, or annulment; or

Your marriage occurred after age 50 and you were entitled to benefits as a disabled widow(er) or disabled surviving divorced spouse.

406.4 How does the termination of a remarriage of a widow(er) or surviving divorced spouse before age 60 affect widow(er)’s benefits?
If you remarry before you turn 60 and that marriage ends, you may become entitled or re-entitled to benefits on your prior deceased spouse’s earnings record. Your benefits begin the month the subsequent marriage ends. If the remarriage was absolutely void or was annulled from the beginning, see �1853.

324 thoughts on “Social Security benefits for divorced spouses

  1. Anita

    I was married to my X for 35 years, he will be getting married this September, and I was wondering if I still would be able to draw/apply for his SS.. If so how much would it be and when can I start collecting it… He is 66 yrs and I am 63

  2. Diana Hunter

    Divorced more than 10 years after 27 year marriage.I’m disabled drawing S.S.D.age 57, ex is 62 and receiving his S.S.benefits , he has remarried I have not,what is my benefit and when does it apply to me?

  3. dorsa

    dear sir/madam

    im 44 years old woman and I got married for 5 years. my husband property is on family trust and I haven’t sign prenuptial agreement. I don’t work .I live in salt lake city . can I have any benefits from my spouse after divorce ?

  4. sarah j

    Hi i have been married to my husband for 18 yrs ,he recently passed away he was recieving ssd at the time am i able to draw those payments?

  5. L.M. Alberts

    I am 86 years old, just filed a legal separation in the state of Pa from my second husband. I was married for the first time for 10 years then divorced, and since, that husband is deceased. Can I claim ss benefits from my first divorced then deceased husband now that I am legally separated?

  6. Susan Shepherd

    I was married 30 years to my x who will not give me the original marriage certificate so I can draw on his ss. All if have is a copy that is not certified. We were married in Mexico. . I have contacted the Registered office where we were married and can’t read spanish. Put in several messages. No call back. What can I do

  7. Jackie Rosa

    Hi my name is Rosa and I want to know my father had divorced my mother they were married for 32 years and he had got remarried with a lady that 38 and his 61 and his going to collect his social security she helped him after they got married she helped him to collect his social security ealry he dose not speak English well but she dose I would like to know is she receiving half of his money? And can my mom fight to get some of his benefits because she was married for 32 years with him and dose not speak well English . Thank you for ur time

  8. melinda

    i was married for 29 years and got divorced. my ex-husband and i lived separately for 3 years and then moved in together to be able to pay our bills better. am i entitled to get half of his social security even though we live at the same address and have not re-married.

  9. Margaret

    I want to no.i was marred to my frist husband.and i remarried am i entiled to him benefits and iam not 62 yet

  10. Rajsmita Dalai

    I got married in 2012 after 6 months of my marriage my husband expired in a accidrnt he was working under state govt i m getting some of benefits under his job scheme frm govt if i get secound marriage than these benefits will continue or it will stop what what does our indian court of law says whether it ll be continuing or it ll stopped

  11. Tim

    My ex spouse, age 60, receives SSDI. I am 51 and am disabled. Can I receive SSDI through my ex spouse’s benefits? I have not remarried and we were married 16 years.

  12. Suzy aggari

    I separated from my husband 16 years ago, we never divorced and remarried. We have one daughter. He was a seafarer and I was managing our orchid business. I left home but no third party involved. He gave me 100k to start a flower business and signed a paper in the lawyers office. I was so naive and scared. He and my daughter were living in the house while I was renting and working hard. He died two years ago and my daughter inherited the house and 160k were divide to two of his children from ex wife and my daughter. Legally we are still married, I should have been Intitled a little bit of what I work hard for, even just a little bit of money. I don’t have much money and still renting a house while my twenty five year old daughter is living in a very huge house with her boyfriend and had 60 thousand cash. It’s not fair at all. :-(

  13. Donald Mitchell

    I have hear same sex partner can get ssi now my partner died in2009 can I draw on his ssi I live in Georgia and what documents would I need thanks

  14. Denise Moore

    I married 07/70 and the marriage ended 1979 4 mos short of ten years . can I get ex spouses ss benifits?

  15. Denise Moore

    I married 07/1970 it ended in 1979 4 mos short of 19 years Can i receive ss from ex spouse? I am 64

  16. Janet S. Ebey

    I was married two my second husband for 33 years, and we divorced because of him getting real sick, but as friends, and he passed away in 2012, but I remarried 3 months after my divorce from and now have been married for 11 years and I’am drawing off of him right now. But buy rules of Social Security in 1988 when I was with him, I because disabled when I was 39 years old, and still am, the only reason I went off of disabitly is because my husband now was making to much money at that time, and had to go off of it is what SS told me, and then later he became disabilty for about 4 years now, we are not getting enough to get buy, and everyone told me I could draw my X-husbands SS, full amount, he was in a nursing home before he passed, could you tell me anything.

  17. Janet S. Ebey

    I was married two my second husband for 33 years, and we divorced because of him getting real sick, but as friends, and he passed away in 2012, but I remarried 3 months after my divorce from and now have been married for 11 years and I’am drawing off of him right now. But buy rules of Social Security in 1988 when I was with him, I because disabled when I was 39 years old, and still am, the only reason I went off of disabitly is because my husband now was making to much money at that time, and had to go off of it is what SS told me, and then later he became disabilty for about 4 years now, we are not getting enough to get buy, and everyone told me I could draw my X-husbands SS, full amount, he was in a nursing home before he passed, could you tell me anything.

  18. lisa

    Am divorced 10yrs, would like to know if there’s anyway my prior husband can be removed from my SS earnings?

  19. Paula

    If I am 46 and my husband is 52 we have been separated for 21yrs. I and disable and drawing my monthly income can I draw of him even if we are still separated

  20. Mila

    Im 61 yrs. old remarried woman collecting disability, Can I collcet from my ex-husband that I was married 25 yrrs.?

  21. Audrey

    I had been married to my ex husband for 15 years. we will be divorced for 2 years in April, can I draw a potion of his security? I am 71 and he is 64 and still working. I heard that I can drae and he doesn’t have to know. we got divorced because of him allowing his family to get involve in our marriage.

  22. Elizabeth Hedrick

    I was married 1 year and 6 months to my husband. We made agreement that if I married and moved to his city that when his oldest son graduated he would move halfway between parents. I was with him three years and very much in love and trusted his word. This year his oldest graduates and he is backing out on his word. I’m so devastated and even worked halfway in between believing in him. I gave up my job and lost clients trusting in him. Is there anything I can do to get emergency benifits for seperation?

  23. Cherry

    My ex husband was drawing disability and va when he was admitted to the nursing home. I was married to him 12 years. He is still in the nursing home. Am I eligible?
    I am 63.

  24. Cindy

    Hello my daddy passed away last year o. Christmas Eve morning it’s been 1 yr 4 months I was his beneficiary can his ex wife that he divorced in February 1995 get any pension are SS benefits paid to her are does that go to me please help me..

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