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Ex-spousal Social Security benefits

On Behalf of | Jul 25, 2016 | Divorce

Some Ohio residents who are obtaining a divorce may still be eligible for Social Security benefits from their former partner regardless of the divorce. Although these may not be worth claiming in every circumstance, there are times when the ex-spousal benefits offered will exceed the Social Security payments that individuals would have obtained themselves.

In order to receive the ex-spousal benefits the partners must have had a marriage of at least 10 years. Their divorce must be at least two years old. The ex-partner seeking to claim the benefits must be able to produce marriage certificates and decrees of divorce that prove these facts. Finally, the divorced spouse must be eligible to collect Social Security themselves. If these conditions are fulfilled, then they may apply for ex-spousal benefits.

Remarriage will render the ex-spouse ineligible to collect on their former partner’s Social Security. The only exception to this rule is when the former spouse has died and the ex-partner applying for benefits is older than 60 years old. However, if these condition are fulfilled, then the benefits of the departed spouse must still be larger than than those of the former spouse applying for benefits for him or her to be able to collect them.

Issues related to asset division and distribution can be among the most complex that are faced by divorcees. The impact on Social Security benefits can be especially difficult to understand without extensive study. It might be helpful to consult with an attorney, as they could recommend options and legal pathways that the divorcing partner may not have known.