Bull Street Paper Your Trusted Source for Financial News and Insights
us flag United States

Are You Missing Out on Divorce Benefits? Find Out Now!

Until debt tear us apart printed red brick wall at daytime
Source: Alice Pasqual / Unsplash

When it comes to retirement income, Social Security benefits play a crucial role for many individuals. For divorced spouses, understanding the nuances of Social Security benefits can be particularly important. If you are divorced, you may be eligible for divorce benefits based on your ex-spouse’s record, under specific conditions.

Firstly, to qualify for divorce benefits, the marriage must have lasted for at least 10 years. Once you meet this criterion, you can potentially receive up to 50% of the amount your ex-spouse will receive at full retirement age (FRA). However, it’s essential to note that if you decide to claim divorce benefits before reaching your FRA, the amount you receive may be reduced.

It’s important to consider the impact of waiting until full retirement age. By waiting until your FRA, you can ensure that you receive the maximum amount of divorce benefits available to you. Additionally, claiming divorce benefits does not affect the benefit amount collected by your ex-spouse or their current spouse. This means that pursuing divorce benefits does not have any bearing on the benefits received by other parties.

One in five adults aged 50 and older rely solely on their Social Security benefits as their primary source of retirement income. For those in this situation, maximizing divorce benefits could be a crucial way to secure additional income during retirement. Therefore, understanding the eligibility criteria and potential impact of timing on Social Security divorce benefits is essential for divorced individuals approaching retirement age.

Moving forward, it’s also important to consider ex-spouse benefits when discussing Social Security after a divorce. Unmarried individuals who are divorced from someone entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits may be eligible for these benefits based on their ex-spouse’s record, provided they were married for at least 10 years.

If eligible, an individual can apply for benefits based on their ex-spouse’s record even if the ex-spouse hasn’t retired yet. This is possible as long as they divorced at least two years before applying. Waiting until full retirement age to apply as a divorced spouse ensures that your benefit will be equal to half of your ex-spouse’s full retirement amount or disability benefit.

Understanding Survivor Benefits After Divorce

After a divorce, understanding survivor benefits is also crucial for securing financial stability during retirement. Survivors such as spouses, children, or parents may be eligible for these benefits if the deceased worker had earned enough credits. The survivor benefit amount is based on the earnings of the deceased worker and can be paid to surviving spouses, unmarried children, and dependent parents.

It’s important to note that reporting a death or applying for survivor benefits cannot be done online; individuals need to contact Social Security directly at 1-800-772-1213. Furthermore, there are limits on how much survivors may earn while receiving these benefits.

If an individual remarries after age 60, their remarriage will not affect their eligibility for survivor benefits from a deceased worker’s Social Security record. Additionally, surviving divorced spouses may also be eligible for survivor benefits under specific conditions.

For those who have experienced divorce and are approaching retirement age, being well-informed about Social Security options is paramount. Whether it’s understanding divorce benefits based on an ex-spouse’s record or securing survivor benefits after a divorce – knowing your rights and potential sources of income is essential for financial planning during retirement.

The information provided in this article is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as financial advice.

Social Security
Divorce benefits
Retirement income
Survivor benefits
Ex-spouse benefits
Financial Planning
Subscribe to our newsletter and stay up to date