Question of the Month: My wife is collecting Social Security Disability. Can she apply for spousal benefits on my work record?

If your wife is at least 62 years old, she can apply for spousal benefits. However, it won’t actually increase her income unless her spousal benefits exceed her Social Security Disability benefit amount. You have to choose either the spousal benefit or the Social Security Disability benefit—you cannot receive both. But you will receive the larger amount of the two benefits.

To Collect a Spousal Benefit There Are Four Requirements You Must Meet:

  1. You must be at least 62 years old 
  2. Your spouse must already be collecting Social Security 
  3. You have to have been married at least one year 
  4. Your spousal benefit has to be bigger than the one based on your own work record.

The bottom line is when you qualify for two Social Security benefit checks, you receive an amount equal to the larger of the two benefits.

 

Timothy J. Cuddigan
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Omaha Social Security and Veterans Disability Lawyer With Over 40 Years Experience
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