How To Use An Ex-Spouse’s Work History To Qualify For Social Security Benefits

Even after divorce, you may still be able to receive Social Security benefits based on your spouse’s work history. This type of situation typically occurs when one spouse takes on the task of being a stay-at-home parent. Then after 30 years of raising children and taking care of the home, your spouse files for divorce. Don’t worry, all hope is not lost. Depending upon certain criteria you may be able to receive your ex-spouse’s retirement benefit. This can happen as long as:

  • You are unmarried;
  • Your marriage lasted for at least 10 years;
  • You are age 62 or older; and
  • Your ex-spouse is entitled to either Social Security retirement or disability benefits.

The benefits you would be eligible for are equal to one-half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount. Keep in mind, this benefit is only for retirement. There is no disability benefits for a divorced spouse. However, there are potential widower benefits for individuals who are younger than age 62 and disabled. If your spouse passes away, you will want to inquire into potential survivor benefits. For disability purposes, you may apply for a program called disabled survivor benefits. This program requires the individual to be age 50 or older, your spouse must have passed away within 7 years of the disability, and you must meet the definition of disability. Of note, remarriage will not affect survivor disability benefits.

There are several more different types of social security retirement and disability programs. We would be happy to discuss your options with a free consultation. Call us at the LaBovick Law Group toll-free at (561) 623-3681.

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