Will Remarriage Affect my Social Security Benefits?

married couple hugging Whether it’s a morning ceremony or an evening gala, excitement’s in the air. It’s wedding season! A time when many couples officially tie the knot. Social Security is with you throughout life’s journey, we wouldn’t miss the chance to be there after your wedding. 

If you’re getting married, along with the excitement of your impending nuptials, you may have some questions about changing the name on your Social Security card.

If you get Social Security disability or retirement benefits and you get married again, there are four ways in which remarriage may affect your benefits:

  1. If you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits — If you marry, your spouse’s income and resources may change your SSI benefit. If you and your spouse both get SSI, your benefit amount will change from an individual rate to a couple’s rate.
  2. If you receive benefits as a widow, divorced widow, widower, or divorced widower — You cannot get benefits if you remarry before age 60 or if you are disabled and remarry before age 50. If you remarry before you turn 50, you will not be entitled to survivor’s benefits, unless the marriage ends.

—  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 first month in which the subsequent marriage ended if all entitlement requirements are met.

  1. If you receive divorced spouse’s benefits — Generally, your benefits end if you remarry. Check out if you are divorced for more information.
  2. Benefits for a child under age 18 or student ages 18 or 19 — Benefits end if you marry. You can find more information in our page Benefits for Children.

Also, your remarriage after age 60 does not prevent you from becoming entitled to benefits on your prior deceased spouse’s Social Security earnings record. Visit our Benefit Planners for more information.

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659 thoughts on “Will Remarriage Affect my Social Security Benefits?

  1. I am 68 and collecting my own SS benefits. If I marry a 73 yr old man who is also collecting his SS benefits, will it affect the monthly amount of SS we receive or will it stay the same?

  2. i am 69 and received Social Security and Medicare; I do not work, though I have some financial resources. My girlfriend is 59 and receives SSI and Medicaid…she does not work. How/when can we get married so that my income/resources do not impact her earnings, whether now or when she is older?

    Thank you!

  3. I am a widower of a U.S. citizen – my wife died at the age of 62 in 2008, she had been collecting an ssa disability benefit for approximately 8 years prior to her death. I am a Canadian citizen who was 52 at the time of my wife’s passing. At that time I was able to get a Social Security number, applied for and received the one time $255 death benefit. I have not re-married. I will be turning 66 in November of 2021 and understand that within the parameters of the ‘Totalization Agreement’ and ‘Windfall Elimination Provision’ that I will be entitled to receive an ssa retirement benefit from my deceased wife’s record (which will use calculations that account for my Canadian CPP pension amounts). I intend to wait until FRA (full retirement age) before making a claim. I have no work record in the US and am already receiving a reduced CPP (Canada Pension). Question #1: Is there are any SSA DRC (Delayed Retirement Credit) allowances for this situation or is the survivor’s benefit maximum at FRA with no incentive for me to wait to claim after November 2021? Question #2: I understand that I have a couple of options including making an application to an SSA office in Baltimore MD, when should I make this application if I would like to start receiving a benefit in December of 2021?

  4. If both people get SS Benefits if you get married will it effect what you receive from Social Security if you are both over 60.

  5. I am 30 years old and i receive Supplemental security income and my boyfriend doesn’t have a job and isn’t on any assistance except food stamps and he’s 39 and we want to get married will my Supplemental security income be cut off or affected

    • Hi Lil, thanks for using our blog. If you get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and you marry, it could affect your benefits. If you marry, your spouse’s income and resources may change your SSI benefit or if you and your spouse both get SSI, your benefit amount will change from an individual rate to a couple’s rate. To report your marriage, you will need to call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  6. I was married 31 years to a doctor.
    He made very good money.
    I ran our businesses without much pay for 25 years.
    We divorced when I turned 52.
    He remarried our receptionist,
    but I am still single for now but want to eventually remarry. Im very afraid i will get nothing.
    What should i expect?

    • Hi Nancy, thanks for using our blog. If you are divorced and unmarried, you may be able to receive benefits on your ex-spouse’s record if your marriage lasted 10 years or longer. Your benefit as a divorced spouse can be equal to one-half of your ex’s full retirement amount only if you start receiving those benefits at your full retirement age. If you begin to receive benefits at age 62 or prior to your full retirement age, your benefits are reduced. The reduction factors are permanently applied to all of the benefits you qualify for once you opt to start benefits at age 62 or at any time prior to your full retirement age.

      Remember, if you qualify for your own retirement benefits and for benefits as a divorced spouse, we always pay your own retirement 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.

      See our Retirement Planner: If You’re Divorced for other eligibility requirements and more detailed information.

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