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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Effect of Divorce on Claims for Social Security Retirement Benefits

Can my ex-spouse benefit from my social security retirement?

Social Security retirement benefits are a vital component of the retirement picture for many Americans.  Did you know that your ex-spouse may be able to benefit from the Social Security benefits you collect even after a divorce?  There a several ways in which a divorced spouse can still receive retirement benefits based on his or her ex-spouse’s financial portfolio, provided the eligibility requirements are met. As always, if you are facing this issue and are not sure where to turn, be sure to contact a competent New York City Social Security attorney right away. 

Collecting retirement benefits from former spouse

As a threshold consideration, the amount of benefits available to a former spouse will depend on the working spouse’s employment and income records. Naturally, the more paid in by the spouse, the higher the available monthly payments that may be available to the ex. Under current Social Security guidelines – which are subject to change on a yearly basis – the following requirements must be met in order for an ex-spouse to collect from the other: 
• The marriage must have lasted ten years or longer;
• The spouse seeking to collect must remain unmarried;
• The spouse seeking to collect is aged 62 or older;
• The spouse seeking to collect is not entitled to his or her own retirement benefits in an amount equal to or greater the amount available through the ex-spouse; and
• The payor spouse is actually entitled to benefits.
Remarriage will generally negate any opportunity to collect benefits from a former spouse. However, if the remarriage ends through death, divorce, or annulment, he or she may still be able to access retirement benefits from the former spouse, assuming the above-listed requirements are met. 

If you are facing a difficult disability or retirement benefits issue in New York and would like to speak to a reputable attorney, please contact the disability and social security attorneys at Seelig Law Offices by dialing (212)766-0600 today! 


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