In most cases, any property or assets acquired during marriage will be split evenly during a divorce – everything except Social Security benefits. That’s because Social Security benefits are federal, meaning they are not subject to division in state courts.
How Social Security Benefits are Affected by Divorce
First off, the magic number is 10. That’s the number of years your marriage must have lasted in order for your ex to have any claim on your Social Security benefits and vice versa.
Other rules that will enable you or your ex to be eligible for a cut of their/your Social Security benefits include your ex:
- Being 62 or older
- Remains unmarried
- Dying after the divorce as long as you remain single or remarry after the age of 60
Special Rule Allows You to Claim Benefits Even if Spouse Hasn’t
There is a unique Social Security law that applies to divorced spouses, which makes you or your ex eligible to claim the other’s benefits even if they have not yet claimed retirement benefits themselves.
Here’s how that works:
Both of you must have been divorced for at least two (2) years and both of you must be at least 62-years-old and eligible to receive Social Security benefits.
How Much of Your Ex’s Benefits Are You Entitled To?
First off, keep in mind that you’ll not be able to claim both your Social Security benefits and those of your ex. Rather, if you qualify, you’ll receive the larger of the two amounts.
If you were born between 1943 and 1954, you’re eligible to receive up to 50% of your ex’s benefits. Of course, that number will be less if they take benefits before their full retirement age of 66.
Call The Men’s Legal Center to Find Out What You’re Entitled To
As you can tell, even when a divorce has concluded, there’s still lots left in its wake to consider.
If you’re facing divorce or have already been through it but want to know what you may still be entitled to, get in touch with us at the Men’s Legal Center. You can call us at 619-535-6535 or send an email.