My attorney said I would be entitled to Social Security benefits.

Ending a long marriage is a difficult process, but the silver lining to ending over a decade with your spouse is the potential entitlement to their social security benefits.

By Bruce M. Berger
May 25, 2006
"I have been married for 40 years; my career was raising the kids and taking care of my husband. My attorney mentioned that I would be entitled to Social Security benefits via my ex-husband's record. How does this work?"

Your attorney is correct in certain circumstances. If your ex-spouse is currently collecting Social Security, you may qualify for benefits. To qualify, you must meet the following criteria:

a) You had been married for at least ten years
b) You must be at least 62 years old
c) You must be currently unmarried and ineligible for an equal or higher benefit on your own Social Security record or on someone else's record.
FL FAQs/Pensions, Retirement Plans, QDROs

If you continue to work while receiving benefits, the same earnings limits apply to you as would apply to your ex-spouse. The amount of benefits that you receive will have no effect on your ex-spouse's benefits or other benefits they may receive.


Bruce M. Berger is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Valuation Analyst practicing in Fort Lauderdale. He is the managing partner and owner of Bruce M. Berger and Company. He also co-runs a mediation practice. 

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May 25, 2006
Categories:  FAQs

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