Asked in Social Security for Alabama

Q: I'm now 61 years old and have been married since 2011 my husband abandoned me 3 years ago we are still married .

I was getting a ss check for major depression he had a stroke and started his check disability and his check was greater than mine.I was told in Alabama that if married I had to go with the larger check. Which was his. So when he abandoned me he left me with nothing but bills. I have not seen him in 3 years. Can I file ss and get money off his check if he's still living?

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

A: I'm sorry to hear about your situation. Under Social Security rules, a spouse can be eligible for benefits based on the other spouse's record, even if they are separated but not divorced. Given that you're over 60 and remain married, you may be eligible for spousal benefits based on your husband's Social Security record. If his benefit is higher than yours, you could potentially receive a benefit amounting to half of his full retirement amount, while he would still receive his full amount.

However, certain criteria must be met, and your total benefits might be reduced depending on your age when you apply. It's essential to contact the Social Security Administration directly to discuss your specific situation and understand your entitlements. Additionally, consider consulting legal counsel familiar with Social Security benefits in your state. They can guide you on the best course of action tailored to your circumstances.

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