13 Replies Latest reply on Jun 24, 2013 11:42 AM by JoL

    EX Husband

    JoL
      If I never remarried but my EX husband did, can I collect on his social security if benefits would be higher than mine? I will reached full retirement age in 2 1/2 years.
        • Re: EX Husband
          MyR Community Manager
          JoL,

          Thank you for creating a new discussion thread! We appreciate and enjoy your participation in the MyRetirement.org online community and look forward to your future contributions.
          • Re: EX Husband
            Mindy
            If the marriage lasted more than 10 years, and you are not married, yes, you may collect 50% of your ex's SS benefits, even your ex has married, and has not collecting his SS benefits yet.  
             
            You need marriage license when you go to SS office.  The officer will calculate for you to see if his 50% is more than yours.  If you have not reached full SS benefits age, you'll get less than 50%.
              
            you'll be able to collect 50% of his SS benefits until you marry to someone again.  If your ex is still working, and his SS benefits increases, yours will increase too, SS office will notify you. 
              • Re: EX Husband
                JoL
                Mindy said...
                If the marriage lasted more than 10 years, and you are not married, yes, you may collect 50% of your ex\'s SS benefits, even your ex has married, and has not collecting his SS benefits yet.  
                 
                You need marriage license when you go to SS office.  The officer will calculate for you to see if his 50% is more than yours.  If you have not reached full SS benefits age, you\'ll get less than 50%.
                  
                you\'ll be able to collect 50% of his SS benefits until you marry to someone again.  If your ex is still working, and his SS benefits increases, yours will increase too, SS office will notify you. 
                Thank You so much for the information. I 'll be 64 this year and would LOVE to retire now but holding out for full retirment age 66. It is my understanding that I would be lock in to his (Ex) SS if I choose to collect on his benefits. Is that correct, or could I collect his now and then mine at my full retirment age? 
                  • Re: EX Husband
                    Mindy
                    I don't know the answer.  You may call SS.  They will be able to tell you.  They are very friendly, even though you may have to wait for several minutes before anyone is available. I called SS when I was 63, they answered all my questions and made an appointment for me with local SS office. 
                     
                    I was 63 when I applied SS benefits, and only have 42% of my ex's benefits only slightly more than mine.  I knew,and was told that I could return all the SS benefits anytime, and reapply SS benefits when I  reach 66 to get full benefits. I understand this is the only way to change SS benefits.
                     
                    When I applied SS benefits in local SS office, I was just divorced and lost job the same time.  The officer was very nice and helpful.  But switch to my own SS benefit when I reach 66 to get full benefits while keep what I had before 66 was not the option, ever though my own full SS benefits is much more than 42% of my ex's.  
                     
                    If I were you, I would call SS, and ask them, or even go to local SS office to know all of your options.  
                     
                    Good luck! 
                      
                      • Re: EX Husband
                        JoL
                        Thank You once again for the information. I will call SS for some clear answers. You have been most helpful!
                          • Re: EX Husband
                            dkbakerjr
                            I recently spoke with a friend who is approaching age 65 and contemplating retirement.  She was pleasantly surprised to learn that she qualifies to receive her deceased ex-husband's social security benefits.   He had re-married after their divorce but wife #2 married again after his death.  According to my friend, this allowed her (wife #1) to receive his entire benefit as long as she continues to work (federal employee).
                            • Re: EX Husband
                              StraitFan
                              You may well be aware of this but just in case you don't, I was told by many people that I would be able to draw mine and half of his. That is not correct. The SS office told me you have to pick one or the other. It's important to get your advice directly from SS. People often think they know something about SS and they don't.
                                • Re: EX Husband
                                  smaneck
                                  StraitFan said...
                                  You may well be aware of this but just in case you don\'t, I was told by many people that I would be able to draw mine and half of his. That is not correct. The SS office told me you have to pick one or the other. It\'s important to get your advice directly from SS. People often think they know something about SS and they don\'t.
                                  True, but you can change your choice later on. You can start out collecting half of your ex-husband or husband's Social Security and then when your own maxes out at 70 you can begin collecting your own and drop his. When the higher-wage earner reaches full retirement it may make sense for him or her to apply for Social Security even if he  or she intends to keep working. The higher-wage earner then suspends payments. This allows the spouse to collect Social Security while the wage earners benefits continue to accrue.
                                   
                                • Re: EX Husband
                                  smaneck
                                  JoL said...

                                  Thank You so much for the information. I \'ll be 64 this year and would LOVE to retire now but holding out for full retirment age 66. It is my understanding that I would be lock in to his (Ex) SS if I choose to collect on his benefits. Is that correct, or could I collect his now and then mine at my full retirment age? 
                                   
                                  Yes, but when you start collecting your own you stop collecting his.  
                                  • Re: EX Husband
                                    Mashie
                                    Yes, as long as you were married at least 10 years.  
                                    • Re: EX Husband
                                      Mashie
                                      I've been told that you can't collect on an ex-spouse's social security record until they are of retirement age, even if YOU are.  My ex is 11 years younger than me.  Does anyone know if that is true?  If yes, I will have to collect my lower amt. for a decade before I get to collect the higher amount!
                                      • Re: EX Husband
                                        I think by now other posts have answered your question but I'll add just a little bit more from what I learned from calling SS. First of all, my ex-husband is 3 years younger than me. Most people take for granted that the husband is usually older. I have to wait until he's 62, meaning I have to be 65, before I could ever collect on his benefits. If I apply at 65 before my full retirement age of 66 1/2, I have to apply for both his benefits and mine (that's what they mean by the deeming rule) -  but because my full amount will be more than his 1/2, I will  be denied his benefits. I would be forced to withdraw on my benefits, not his because I'm not at full retirement age at 65. The best thing for me to do is wait until I'm 66 1/2 to retire, when the deeming rule will no longer apply, collect  on his until I'm 70  and then collect on mine if I can financially do it. It's worth giving SS a call.
                                          • Re: EX Husband
                                            JoL
                                            Thank for the info. I called social security and found out the best thing for me to do and that is wait until I'm 66 (at full retirment age). I was hpoing for a way out NOW, but just can not happen.  Thanks Again for the reply.