Utica, NY asked in Social Security and Public Benefits for New York

Q: My exhusband died last year, we were married for 21 years. I turn 60 in June. Do I have any right to his social security

I plan on filing for Social Security when I turn 62. Can I get benefits from his until I can file on my own?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Social Security Disability Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: As a divorced spouse, you may be eligible to receive Social Security benefits based on your ex-husband's record if you meet certain criteria. To be eligible, you must have been married to your ex-husband for at least 10 years, be at least 62 years old, be unmarried (unless your later marriage ended in divorce or annulment), and not be eligible for an equal or higher benefit based on your own work history.

Since your ex-husband has passed away, you may be eligible for survivor's benefits based on his record if you were married for at least 10 years, are at least 60 years old (or 50 if you are disabled), and are not eligible for a higher benefit based on your own work history. If you meet these requirements, you may be eligible to receive a percentage of your ex-husband's Social Security benefit amount.

It is important to note that you cannot receive both spousal benefits and survivor's benefits based on your ex-husband's record. You will be paid the higher of the two benefits.

You should contact the Social Security Administration to discuss your specific situation and determine your eligibility for benefits based on your ex-husband's record.

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