Ex-Spouse Benefits And How They Affect You

two women and child smiling Just like during tax season, it’s good to have all the information you need early so you can prepare and get any money you are due.

If you are age 62, unmarried, and divorced from someone entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits, you may be eligible to receive benefits based on his or her record. To be eligible, you must have been married to your ex-spouse for 10 years or more. If you have since remarried, you can’t collect benefits on your former spouse’s record unless your later marriage ended by annulment, divorce, or death. Also, if you’re entitled to benefits on your own record, your benefit amount must be less than you would receive based on your ex-spouse’s work. In other words, we’ll pay the higher of the two benefits for which you’re eligible, but not both.

You can apply for benefits on your former spouse’s record even if he or she hasn’t retired, as long as you divorced at least two years before applying. If, however, you decide to wait until full retirement age to apply as a divorced spouse, your benefit will be equal to half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount or disability benefit. The same rules apply for a deceased former spouse.

The amount of benefits you get has no effect on the benefits of your ex-spouse and his or her current spouse. Visit Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced to find all the eligibility requirements you must meet to apply as a divorced spouse. Our benefits planner gives you an idea of your monthly benefit amount. If your ex-spouse died after you divorced, you may still quality for widow’s benefits. You’ll find information about that in a note at the bottom of the website.

Visit Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced today to learn whether you’re eligible for benefits on your ex-spouse’s record. That could mean a considerable amount of monthly income. What you learn may bring a smile to your face … even on tax day!

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157 thoughts on “Ex-Spouse Benefits And How They Affect You

  1. i divorced him in 1989 and the divorce decree said
    we do not share our retirement. does that mean he
    cannot get any of my benefits

  2. if the divorce agreement states that no spousal support to either party – does that remove benefits to the other spouse – so can my ex claim these benefits ?

  3. I have Been divorced for 20 years have not remarried am 75 years old. Former spouse is and has Been on disability sincex1998 . how would I go about seeing if I qualify for.

    • Thank you for your question, Brenda. Generally, during your initial interview to apply for Social Security benefits, we typically explore other possible eligibility that could yield you a higher benefit amount. Our web page “If You’re Divorced” explains how you can receive benefits on your divorced spouse’s record.
      To find out if you are eligible for a higher benefit and to discuss your options, contact us at 1-800-772-1213 Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or visit your local Social security office. Thanks!

  4. I was told when I visited the SS office I was not eligible to collect on an ex-wife’s SS, now 30 or so years later I read stuff like this. I might have been able all these years to have had a little more income, but might have missed out because someone was either to lazy to process the account or lacked the information to do so.

    • 30 years ago you probably were not old enough or your payment on your own record was higher so you were not eligible then and I doubt you are now. Reread the article. You did not miss out due to someone else being lazy.

    • That is why you should always receive something in writing, ask for a copy highlighted of where the information was retrieved and then ask for a supervisor! It is better to be safe then sorry. Also, SS does not pay retroactively.
      Sorry you had to find out after all these years.

  5. Can you find out when you ex-spouse files for benefits? Alimony can be adjusted based on the ex-spouse’s higher income but only by taking them back to court. How do you know when you can take them back to court? Believe me when I say the ex will NOT vounteer this info because they will want the full alimony & increased in spousal benefit.

    • SSA should not be disclosing if your ex has filed for benefits. Hire a lawyer if needed to get the ex to live up to the terms of your divorce decree…

  6. If a widow collects spousal benefits and she continues to work, will her SS benefits increase if her earnings record exceeds his? Does she need to reapply for her own benefits to receive the higher amount? And how can she ascertain if this increase might be imminent?

    • Hi Emmie, if you receive survivors benefits, additional earnings could help make your retirement benefit higher than your current survivors benefit. Visit our Retirement Planner: Getting Benefits While Working for more information.
      To see if you qualify for a higher benefit than what you’re getting now, you can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and ask one of our agents to assist you.
      Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks!

  7. Legally separated for albout 20 years. He passed away this January. I have been collecting SS for 4 Years now, is there $ I am eligible for? I’m collecting SS under my SS number siincei worked for 40 years. My benefits may be higher but I’m not sure.

    • Hi Alice, you can ask us to review your record. To see if you are eligible for a higher benefit amount than what you’re receiving now, you will need to speak to a Social Security Representative. You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and ask one of our agents to assist you. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or you can contact your local Social Security office directly.
      We hope this information helps!

  8. All this time, I thought I had to wait until he was retired!! I will be 62 this year; he is only 58. I will take a trip to the SS office to check possibilities. Thanks so much for this article and

    • Hello, you may be able to receive benefits on your ex-spouse’s record, at age 62, if your ex-spouse is entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits.
      If your ex-spouse does not apply for retirement benefits, but can qualify for them (when he is at least age 62), you can receive benefits on his or her record if you have been divorced for at least two years. For more information and to see other eligibility requirements, please visit our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced. Thanks!

  9. Not sure if I can ask a question here, but I will. I am receiving SS on my work record. I get a partial from my ex- spouse. We were married 37 yrs. , have been divorced for 8 yrs. Can I change and get his if more than mine. I took early retirement at 63. They didn’t tell to me wait on my ex-spouse when I asked. They just gave to me when I talked to them. So can I do any thing to see about getting more SS money? Thank You Carol Gillette

    • Thank you for contacting us, Carol. Couple of things to keep in mind. First, if a person begins to receive benefits at age 62 or prior to their full retirement age, their benefits are reduced. The reduction factors are permanently applied to all of the benefits the person may qualify for.
      Also, if you are eligible for retirement benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we will pay the retirement benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount. For example: Let’s say that at your full retirement age you qualify for a retirement benefit of $250 and a divorced spouse’s benefit of $400. You will receive your own $250 retirement benefit, and we will add $150 from your ex-spouse’s benefit, for a total of $400.
      Your benefit as a divorced spouse is equal to one-half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount only if you start receiving benefits at your full retirement age.
      We hope this information helps. Visit our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced for more information, thanks.

      • I have an ex-spouse who was placed on full disability at age 60. I never remarried but he did (prior to age 60). I have a strong feeling that because he liked to work with paycheck not entirely on the books, he most probably has a lower SS benefit than mine, since I worked almost 40 years on payroll reported to IRS. I gathered that when they didn’t in processing my benefits when I applied mention that I could delay my benefits. Being that I had the higher benefits (go figure a woman had the higher benefits) , can I assume he could not apply against my benefits if he remarried before 60. I know if he can it doesn’t effect my benefits but I would like to be sure. Also if and when he dies, can a divorced ex-spouse apply for any widow survivor benefits . I was married over 14 years to my ex-spouse.

    • If you are eligible for both your own retirement benefits and benefits as a divorced spouse, we always pay your own benefits first. If your benefits as a divorced spouse are higher than your own retirement benefits, you will get a combination of benefits equaling the higher divorced spouse benefit.
      Visit our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced for more information.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for further assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks!

    • Just a reminder – We do not have access to personal information, therefore, we do not do direct messaging in this venue. Please be cautious about posting personal information on social media and communicating personal information via email.
      Please visit our Retirement Planner: If You’re Divorced for information on this topic. Thanks!

    • Thank you for your question, Elizabeth. In cases where a common-law marriage may be involved, Social Security follows the state laws. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents for further guidance on this matter. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

  10. I am applying on my ex-spouse’s benefits. My primary social security would be higher than the spousal benefits but if want to defer my own benefits to age 70. i can do that, right? my DOB is 5/28/52 and his DOB is 12/10/41

    • Thank you for your question, Anne. If you were born before January 2, 1954, and have already reached full retirement age, you can choose to receive only the divorced spouse’s benefit and delay receiving your retirement benefit until a later date. If your birthday is January 2, 1954 or later, the option to take only one benefit at full retirement age no longer exists. If you file for one benefit, you will be effectively filing for all retirement or spousal benefits.
      See our Retirement Planner: Recent Claiming Changes for more information.

  11. Do I have a W2 form from SS to declare my income taxes? as I am collecting social security benefit from January 2017 Please let me know. Thanks.

  12. I was married to my first wife who had two affaires after 24 years of marriage and filed for divorce! I was 45 years old and remarried 10 years later to my current wife. My second wife and I have been married 15 years. We are planning to be married till our deaths. I am 70 years of age. Is their anything you tell me about benefits I might be able to get now as having been her spouse.

    • Hi Gloria! You can apply:
      •Online – Use our Social Security Retirement/Medicare Benefit Application to apply for retirement, spouse’s, ex-spouse’s or Medicare benefits.
      •By phone – Call us at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p. m. (TTY 1-800-325-0778).
      •In person – Visit your local Social Security office. (Call first to make an appointment.)

  13. My ex-husband lives in Poland. He’s a Polish citizen and never worked in the USA. He’s 69 and still works.
    In 2001 we divorced after 28 years of marriage.

    I live in the USA and I’m an American citizen. Never married again. I’m 68 and also keep working.
    Am I eligible to benefits and if so how I can get them?

    • you are only due your own SSA retirement benefits.
      You may be due some spouse/widow Polish benefits….but you need to contact the Polish retirement authorities.

  14. this is true i know but i have a question? my husband died in 1999. i receive some of his benefit, but he also had an ex with 3 kids, and they were married more than 10 years , is his ex entitled to some of his benefits too?

  15. I divorced in 2001 and had been married 30 years and 9 months. I had worked most of my married life. In 2015 I went to our local social security office to sign up. I was 62. I asked the man helping me about benefits from my ex husbands social security because he made considerable more money while we were married. He told me I could NOT draw on my ex husbands until he died since I had my own social security. So what is the truth?

  16. I have a question. How do I find out if my ex husband passed. I had no children with him and had no contact for 20 yrs. Would social security know this info? thanks

  17. both my first and second husband were in the service….both went awol, neither one of them put diapers on my son…I did!

  18. incredible you have suzy orman as a spokesperson! didn´t you know that she is a fraud and a scammer. see online reports about her.

  19. Where can I file a complaint against the Office of International Affairs Social Security? They have stopped our checks because of a yearly form which they never send! They won`t answer the phone & I keep getting a recording that says “we will call you back in 48 hours”. They never do!!! What kind of system is this? Their service is horrible! Any help out here? Thank you.

  20. My ex husband died a few years back I’m on disability I’m 58 years old can I draw on his Social Security now that he is deceased I would appreciate some information on this I didn’t know any of this information until this blog come up on my emails thank you
    Sincerely
    Vicky Campbell

    • Hi Vicky! If you are the divorced spouse of a worker who dies, you could get benefits just the same as a widow or widower, provided that your marriage lasted 10 years or more. You can begin receiving benefits as early as age 50 if you are disabled and the disability started before or within seven years of the worker’s death. To see if you’re eligible for a higher benefit than what you’re receiving now, you will have to speak with a Social Security representative.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or contact your local office directly. Thanks!

  21. If my ex-spouse is still alive k62 still working can I draw on his Social Security and not affect what he will get I’m 58 drawing disability we were married over 10 years I am single now we have been divorced since 1985

    Sincerely
    Vicky Campbell

  22. HI,
    SAFIEH M LUTFI
    I CHANGED THE MAILING ADDRESS
    I HAVE NOT RECEIVED MY CHECK BENEFITS FOR THIS MONTH
    I CONTACTED THE ADMINISTRATION THEY TOLD ME THE REASON THAT THERE WAS AN ERROR ABOUT THE MAILING ADDRESS
    MY MAIL BOX IS
    541797
    ZIP CODE 11937
    ABU NSAIR , JORDAN
    MY OHONE NUMBER 9626791557650

  23. I have a question that has been bothering me and would really appreciate an answer.
    I was divorced 1965. He remarried in 1967. He passed away in 2005 proceeded by his wife by 6 months. In 2013 a friend called to tell me that his family had left his ashes at a funeral home and that his wife had passed earlier and no one in his family answered many calls. I called the funeral director, a wonderful man, to ask if I could bury his ashes. I was told by the owner that it would appreciate it very much and I sent my nephew to pick up the ashes and I had him buried in my family plot. Where do I stand, if anything, from his anything including his social security?
    Please have someone answer this question.
    Thank you

  24. How come they tell me I can’t get any of my ex husbands ss we were married in 62 had 2 boys and we both work at the automobile plant, he retired with full benefits I retired early so don’t get as much penision as him, but they say we get the same ssi so therefor I can’t receive any of his ssi, I am divorced from him and single , he is now married??

    • Hi Gloria, if you are eligible for retirement benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we pay the retirement benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount.
      For example: Let’s say that at your full retirement age you qualify for a retirement benefit of $250 and a divorced spouse’s benefit of $400. You will receive your own $250 retirement benefit, and we will add $150 from your ex-spouse’s benefit, for a total of $400.
      Your benefit as a divorced spouse is equal to one-half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount -only- if you start receiving benefits at your full retirement age.
      Also, keep in mind that if a person begins to receive benefits at age 62 or prior to their full retirement age, their benefits are reduced. These reduction factors are permanently applied to all of the benefits the person may qualify for.
      Visit our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced for more information.
      We hope this helps!

  25. My ExSpouse had a work disability injury settlement benefit . We we’re married only 4 years but would our daughter be eligible for his social security benefits and disability benefits? She is over 21.

    • Hello Lavern! Normally, benefits for children stop when children reach age 18, unless they are disabled. However, if the child is still a full-time student at a secondary (or elementary) school at age 18, Social Security benefits will continue until the child graduates or until two months after the child becomes age 19, whichever is first.
      Childhood disability benefits are also payable after reaching age 18, if the disability began before age 22. We hope this information helps.

  26. “You can apply for benefits on your former spouse’s record even if he or she hasn’t retired, as long as you divorced at least two years before applying. If, however, you decide to wait until full retirement age to apply as a divorced spouse, your benefit will be equal to half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount or disability benefit. The same rules apply for a deceased former spouse.”

    In the last sentence above, if the former spouse is deceased, I believe the widow/widower amount payable at full retirement age is more than half of the ex-spouse’s full retirement amount. Correct?

  27. What about resadental custaed and she get paid for y’all’s kid but works and mairred also in com tax not in cluding milatray but just joint tell 18 thanks

  28. does SS cover portable oxygen I have copd and these tanks are so heavy I’m 67 and only weight 112 pds. and the excess weight is so hard I hate to leave the house. And the pull along has caused me to fall a few times and I don’t want to break a hip or leg. Please contact me and let me know. Rita

  29. Can I receive benefits form my spouse being legally separated. I’m disable and my spouse nolonger carries me on his income tax, we used to file jointly. Can I still receive some of his income tax being still married to my spouse. Mrs. Lenore

  30. My husband passed away in April of 2017. His ex wife is receiving more money of his social security than I am and they have been divorced for several years and she has been remarried at least twice since they were married. I am confused.

  31. My ex-spouse was supposed to pay me only $100 a month when we divorced in 2012. He has not paid me one cent I have been struggling. Now in 2018 I should at least be able to get help thru retirement, I turn 62 on tomorrow Feb. 21, 2018. God will provide.

  32. Am I correct in understanding that I can collect the full value of my ex-husband’s Social security monthly payments, if we have been married for 25 years and are divorced for over 2 years?

    • Hi Wendy, if you meet all other eligibility requirements, and your ex-spouse has not applied for retirement benefits, but can qualify for them (age 62 or older), you can receive benefits on their record if you have been divorced for at least two years.
      Your benefit as a divorced spouse is equal to one-half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount -ONLY- if you start receiving benefits at your full retirement age.
      Generally, if you are eligible for retirement benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we will pay the retirement benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount.
      Please visit our web page “If You’re Divorced” for more information. Thanks!

  33. I was married to a man for 25years,however he doesnt retire for about 6years. do i wait untilhe retires or if i collect now will i lose a bunch of money,by claiming it earlier.I only draw626.00 a month,15.oo in food stamps.things are very hard for me,15.00 is a joke for food stamps.Iam 7yearsolder than him.what do u suggest what is best for me.

    • Hello Barbara, in order for you to receive divorced spouse benefits, and in addition to meeting all other eligibility requirements, your ex-spouse must be receiving Social Security retirement or disability benefits. If your ex-spouse does not apply for retirement benefits, but can qualify for them (at his age 62 or older), you can receive benefits on his record if you have been divorced for at least two years. See our web page “If You’re Divorced” for more information. Thanks!

  34. I am a widow of a vet who was 64 when he died. He was receiving social security DISABILITY from the time he filed at I believe age 40 something. I was told I don’t receive any survivors benefits until I turn 65. I’ve had several people tell me otherwise. Could you answer this for me please. I could sure use the income.

    • Hi Trish, see “Ways to Apply“. Please visit our web page “If You’re Divorced” to review the eligibility requirements.
      To speak to a one of our agents, call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will experience a shorter wait time if you call later during the day. Thanks!

  35. I am receiving a surviving spouse benefit on my husband’s Social Security. How do I switch to my own when I reach full retirement age retire in April 2018.

  36. I am disappointed in the online application.
    I was told I can not apply online because my information is different from the information on file.
    Something is wrong on your end, and I would like a solution in an email or a telephone call.

    • We are sorry for the inconvenience, Marie. However, we must address and correct any discrepancies on your record before you apply for benefits.
      Unfortunately, and because of security reasons we do not have access to personal records in this blog. We do not do direct messaging in this venue.
      One of our representatives should be able to provide you with better guidance to find resolution to this matter. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks.

  37. I am legally separated to my husband of 30 years. He is 70 yrs. & started taking SS at 62 yrs.. I will be 62 yrs. this May but have only been working & paying into SS for a few years now ( homemaker before separation); and I’m currently unemployed. Can I take from his SS in May thinking 1/2 of his would still be higher than taking mine early; and then take mine when it reaches higher than what I’d get off his? Thank you!

    • Hi Debbie, even if you have never worked under Social Security, you may be able to get spouse’s retirement benefits if you are at least 62 years of age and your spouse is receiving retirement or disability benefits. You can also qualify for Medicare at age 65. Your benefit as a spouse can only be one-half of your spouse’s full retirement amount if you start receiving benefits at your full retirement age. See our Retirement Planner: Benefits For You As A Spouse for more information.

  38. I have been receiving SS benefits since I turned 62. I get a reduced amount because of the years I taught in Nevada even though I worked 27 years state (NY and FL) that deducted.
    Two years ago my ex-husband (Charles Maxwell Jeffery) died. I went to SS office to see if I could collect his benefits instead of my own and was told no. As I read this article I feel as if I was misguided.

  39. This seems awfully unfair to me, especially since my ex divorced me to live with a man out of wedlock.
    I literally broke my back trying to stay married and she left after I could not work at the same job anymore. She could not live with my pain, but now she can tap my Social Security and give it to someone else as long as she does not marry him?
    WHO THOUGHT THIS SCAM UP???
    I suffer pain every single day of the year, but I have to pay her alimony?
    SHE INHERITED THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS FROM HER MOTHER… SO WHERE IS MY SHARE?

  40. So HORRIFIED for me as since yesterday tried to reach
    SSI by phone – waited n waited for hours FINALLY hv no
    choice but to hang up.
    All I want to find out is HERE IS MY SPOUSE BENEFIT
    check? He passed away 1/21/18 and the Mortuary notified you and stated that I shud recv a final ck !!! How
    long do I hv to wait? Awaiting yr kind reply.

    • We are sorry for your loss, Theresa. Usually, the funeral director notifies us of an individual’s passing by contacting the local Social Security office. However, you may have to contacts us directly to see if you qualify for a higher benefit as a widow.
      You cannot report a death or apply for survivors’ benefits online.
      To verify that your spouse’s information was reported, and to see if you qualify for a higher benefit, you may need to talk to one of our representatives. When calling our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, you may experience a shorter wait time if you call later during the day. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or contact your local Social Security office.

  41. I have been trying to get my deceased husbands social security for over a year now
    We were together 34 yrs I have sent paper in from 2 of his kid’s an from my sister We were common law I haven’t heard a thing from s.s.since I found out injure I was turned down and I appealed it in July of2o17 I’m just trying to survive as my ss is 500.00 a mo can’t live on that.he passed away nov.17 2016 . 9

  42. My Precious Husband passed away Feb 13….I am 56 and have a son who is disabled due to stroke….my dear husband drew 1575 and they took for Medicare part a and b- which lowered what he was drawing….I.was also his caregiver and my sons…..how so I calculate what I will draw….His name was Jerry W Bowen….I.have the letter sent to y’all from Senters funeral home in Fulton MS..heey

  43. How do I contact you about this? I’m living outside the US, so your toll-free number doesn’t work. You won’t do business by email because of confidentiality issues. Please tell me how to contact you. Thanks.

  44. Thank you, Jim. I have been on the phone with Social Security for two hours today going crazy because they are claiming I can take my own benefits at age 62, but if my ex-spouse dies anytime after that I can switch to 81% or more of his benefits, which would be more – yet NOTHING on their entire website says that. Are ex-spouses really allowed to switch later to an ex-spouse’s benefits after taking their own SS benefits? The woman on the phone there couldn’t find it on their site either. I asked where she learned that information and if she could send it to me in writing, and she said she didn’t know. It makes a big difference in my retirement planning to know if this is true or not. Grateful for any help you can give me, Kathy

    • Hi Kathy. The earliest age you can apply for reduced retirement benefits is 62. However, if a person begins to receive benefits at age 62 or prior to their full retirement age, their benefits are reduced. The reduction factors are permanently applied to all of the benefits the person may qualify for.
      You may still be eligible to collect a higher benefit as a “Surviving Divorced Spouse” if your ex-spouse passes away.
      If you are the divorced spouse of a worker who dies, you could get benefits just the same as a widow or widower, provided that your marriage lasted 10 years or more. Survivors benefits are paid at a higher rate.
      In many cases, a surviving divorced spouse/widow can begin receiving one benefit at a reduced rate (as early as 60 years old) and then, at full retirement age, switch to the other benefit at an unreduced rate. See our Survivors Planner: How Much Would Your Benefit Be? for more information.
      We hope this helps!

    • Unfortunately, and because of security reasons we do not have access to personal records in this blog. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later in the week.
      Please be cautious about posting personal information on social media. Thanks!

  45. I am receiving widower benefits now. I applied when I was 62. I am now 70. Can I receive my own benefits if they are more than his?

    • Thank you for your question, Olivia. You can request that we review your records. To see if you’re eligible for a higher benefit amount you will need to speak to one of our agents. Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
      Generally, you will have a shorter wait time if you call later during the day or later in the week. Thanks!

  46. Dear Social Security Administration.
    I did an amendment on my name, what I can do to have my new card with the changes?
    Thank you.

    • Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or contact your local Social Security office directly. Thanks!

  47. I am asking for myself, I was injured in a wreck at the age of 15, 1986. Two shattered vertebra, broken rib, went into right lung, paralyzed from waist down, told I’d never walk again.
    First surgery lasted approximately 5 hours to remove rib from lung, had to have blood transfusion. Breathing treatments.
    Second surgery lasted approximately 8 hours, to remove bone fragments, which there are still fragments, two Harrington Rods attatched to spine, that go from between shoulders down bottom of spine. Never to be removed, as they are my “spine”.
    I fought my way back to walking, using bathroom, dressing myself, basic daily life as before the accident.
    I have worked since the age of 17 until the age of 43. Where now my “spine”is in such disrepair, I am not a candidate for any surgery due to the nerve damage, and scar tissue, that if I were to survive the surgery, I’d come out a paraplegic.
    I have tried for approximately 10 years to be qualified for disability benefits, to which I have been repeatedly turned down, stating that I present myself clean, well dressed, well educated, and therefore can adapt myself to any work environment.
    I do not find this fair, as they do not know the daily struggles I go through, the constant pain I endure daily, hour to hour.
    My question is, why is it that someone that is diagnosed Bi-polar can, in FACT recieve benefits, but someone like me, physically impaired cannot, because I shower?
    Some kind of insight into this would be greatly appreciated.
    As the 3 Specialists that I have seen, all said that I Will end up back in a wheelchair, there is nothing that can be done to help me, or my pain.
    Thanks for reading this, because I am scared as hell. I’m only 47.

  48. I am still working and will be 62 this summer of 2018. I was married 17 years, divorced 18 years ago, never remarried. I have earned more in my career than my ex, who is now 69 and and retired, taking his Social Security.

    I plan to retire at 65 and defer taking my own SS until 70 if possible. I was told last summer at a SSA office that 1 month before my 66th birthday I would qualify to start taking an amount equal to half of my ex husband’s current SS income and thus defer taking my own until age 70. But today I read at an IRS.gov site that this is only a choice for people born before 1/2/1954. Since I was born in 1956, is that no longer an option for me, to qualify for half my ex’s until I take my own at 70?
    Thank you

    • Thank you for contacting us, Mary. If your birthday is January 2, 1954 or later, the option to take only one benefit at full retirement age no longer exists. If you file for one benefit, you will be effectively filing for all retirement or spousal benefits.
      According to the new rules, deemed filing applies to individuals turning 62 on or after January 2, 2016. If you are eligible for retirement benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we will pay the retirement benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount. We hope this information helps!

  49. There are some lazy people who won’t work and have
    never held a job very long but they had planned to get social security from off of someone else’s work history.
    This is not right. Lazy people should get paid for being lazy!!!!!!

  50. Please correct the error below. Ex-spouse benefits are different upon death of their former spouse I’m pretty sure. Thanks!
    “If, however, you decide to wait until full retirement age to apply as a divorced spouse, your benefit will be equal to half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount or disability benefit. The same rules apply for a deceased former spouse.”

  51. I was married For 5 years we ain’t been divorced 1 year yet and he passed away on the 17 of April 2018 can I draw his socail security benefits

  52. I currently receive disability benefits.
    Am I also entitled to receive SS retirement benefits based on my ex-spouse income? We were married for over 10 years, and I have not remarried.

    • Hi Mark, you need to contact us. You can call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213, Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thanks!

  53. how do I find out how much I will get from my x spouse’s ss? and can I retire at age 65 and draw off his social security until I reach 66. And then at age 66 begin drawing on my social security at a higher rate?

    • Hello Cathy, you may be eligible to start receiving benefits on your ex-husband’s record when you are age 62 or older. Your ex-spouse must be entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits. Keep in mind, if you are eligible for retirement benefits on your own record and divorced spouse’s benefits, we will pay the retirement benefit first. If the benefit on your ex-spouse’s record is higher, you will get an additional amount on your ex-spouse’s record so that the combination of benefits equals that higher amount.
      For additional information and more on eligibility requirements please visit our Retirement Planner: If You Are Divorced. Thanks!

  54. I have a client who was married for over 10 years, divorced and re-married prior to age 60. Second marriage lasted over 10 years. Both first (divorced) spouse and second spouse died. When second husband died, she was given the choice of which spouses’ SS to receive. She chose the second, even though he did not earn as much as first spouse. I believe that she took a reduced benefit for not attaining age 62 at the time of the benefit. Is there any way for her to now elect to receive the first, divorced spouse’s benefit, even if it is at a reduced benefit amount? If so, what form should she use? (The first spouse had remarried prior to his death, FWIW)

    • Hello Dan. Generally, when you apply for Social Security benefits, we explore for other possible eligibility that can pay you a higher benefit amount. By law, we are required to pay the highest benefit amount when eligible in multiple records. Your client can contact us and request a review of her benefit records. Thanks!

  55. I am already on SSI and SSDI, Medicaid and Medicare. I was married for 24 years and divorced in 2009. In the divorce settlement I was given all of my ex-husbands 401K, which is about $6,000 now. I was also given 41% of his PERSI. My ex, Bruce, continued to work for the state of Idaho several more years after the divorce, then quit and worked for the state in AZ. He just now has decided to collect his PERSI, which means I also have to make decisions on my 41%. My fear is losing my SSI, SSDI, and Medicaid because of having this money. It can also require me to move out of my Section 8 housing as well. PERSI said I have one of two choices, either cashing out on the whole 41% and 401K, or leaving the 41% in an account in my name with PERSI and letting it collect interest, or taking monthly payments from that money. I cannot take part of the PERSI, it is all or nothing I was told. I have no idea what to do. I have thought I would cash out the whole 401K and use it to get a couple of things I really need. I believe I should pay the taxes on that right away so I don’t have any surprises next tax season. I had hoped to use part of the PERSI to buy a car, but I don’t know if I can do that. I guess the only way I can do that is to either cash out the whole 41% or keep it all in PERSI and take monthly payments and hope it is enough to make car payments. I am running out of time to make a decision on this and I am lost, I don’t know what to do. I cannot lose my Medicaid, I have too many health problems. I can’t move from my apartment either. I am afraid to lose my SSI and SSDI, it took to much to get on them to begin with. I need someone with the knowledge about all of this to help me know what to do. I hope that you are able to help me/guide me. Thank you for your time.

    • Hello Jeri. Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits are not affected by additional income or resources. These benefits are based on your previous earnings and contributions to the program.
      In the other hand, we must always consider any additional income and resources when you receive Supplemental Security Income or SSI benefits. The SSI benefits are paid based on financial need. Per SSI’s Reporting Responsibilities, you are required to inform us of any benefits you may be eligible for and thus apply for such benefits.
      Please call our toll free number at 1-800-772-1213 and speak to one of our agents. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Or contact your local Social Security office directly. Thanks!

  56. I was told at the social security that i could not claim on my ex spouse unless i was married to him more than 10 years. Is this true

  57. my mother is 62 and divorced. she is still working but, her ex passed away 5 yrs ago. is she able to collect his ss and still work if they were married for over 10 yrs??? thank you.

    • Thank you for your question, Jerry. Yes, your mother could still work and receive “Surviving Divorced Spouse” benefits. However, there are limits on how much survivors may earn while they receive benefits.
      At age 62, your mother is still under her full retirement age. if you are younger than full retirement age and make more than the yearly earnings limit, this can reduce the number of payments you receive through the year. For 2018 that limit is $17,040. See “How We Deduct Earnings From Benefits” for more information.
      You cannot apply for survivors benefits online. if your mother decides to apply for benefits, she can call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). She can speak to a Social Security representative between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. She can also contact the local Social Security office. An appointment is not required, but if you call ahead and schedule one, it may reduce the time you spend waiting to speak to someone.
      We hope this information helps!

  58. I am under ss disability benefits since 1995 and want to know:
    1. Will my benefits increase at the age of 62 y/o?

    2. Can I work and not loose my disability benefits

    • Great questions, Edith. Social Security strongly supports those individuals who want to return to the work force while supplementing their disability benefit income.
      We have Work Incentives that allow people to work and still receive their benefits. A person may still be eligible for disability benefits under the Social Security Disability Insurance program if they work. However, their earnings cannot exceed a certain amount. This is called the Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) limit.
      In addition to the amount of money you make, Social Security may also look at the number of hours you’re able to work.
      In the other hand, Social Security disability benefits automatically change to retirement benefits when disability beneficiaries attain their full retirement age. Benefits are not interrupted with this transition and the benefit amount will generally remains the same. Disability benefits are paid at the highest rate based on your work history prior to becoming disabled.
      We hope this information helps!

  59. Good day everybody my name is Mrs Caroline Gilli am here to share with you my life experience how a great man called Dr Alexzander saved me and my marriage.I have been Married & Barren for for 5 years i had no child. i have never been pregnant i was a subject of laughter from my Friends & neighbors, i almost lost my marriage because of this issue.i was so confused that i did not know what to do until i came across this great Dr online and i contacted him at once i was scared weather it was going to work because i never believed things like this before, so i decided to give it a try and i did all what Dr Alexzander asked of me and today to my greatest surprise i took in the first time and i gave birth to a bouncing baby boy and now my marriage that was about crashig before is now restored. my husband now love and want me better, Am so happy for everything that have been happening my life since i met this Dr Alexzander.
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  60. Am Mrs Caroline Gilli am here to share with you my life experience how a great man called Dr Alexzander saved me and my marriage.I have been Married & Barren for for 5 years i had no child. i have never been pregnant i was a subject of laughter from my Friends & neighbors, i almost lost my marriage because of this issue.i was so confused that i did not know what to do until i came across this great Dr online and i contacted him at once i was scared weather it was going to work because i never believed things like this before, so i decided to give it a try and i did all what Dr Alexzander asked of me and today to my greatest surprise i took in the first time and i gave birth to a bouncing baby boy and now my marriage that was about crashig before is now restored. my husband now love and want me better, Am so happy for everything that have been happening my life since i met this Dr Alexzander.
    I want to tell all the women out there who have a similar situation like that the world is not over YET they should dry up their tears and contact this great man and their problem will be gone or are you also having other problems you can also contact Dr Alexzander, here is how you can contact him. browse him on google search engine via his name alexzander high temple. searching on him on google will enable you to get his email address or call his phone number +2347068836760 or whatsapp him through this +2347075823891 many blogs online.
    Thank Dr Alexzander for everything you did in my marriage.

  61. I am 71 years old and I would like to know how much would my spouse receive after I am deseased ? She is 58.

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