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Protecting Your Rights In Family Matters

Can you collect Social Security using an ex-spouse’s record?

On Behalf of | Feb 24, 2022 | Divorce

When you divorce your Illinois husband or wife later in life, you may have concerns about retirement and whether you are going to have enough to get by in the absence of your one-time partner. Many people navigating “gray divorce” have similar concerns. However, it may give you some relief to recognize that you may be able to collect Social Security retirement benefits using the work record of your former spouse.

According to CNBC, whether you qualify for Social Security retirement benefits on your own is an important consideration. If you do, you may want to do some research and figure out whether it benefits you more financially to collect benefits using your own record of your former spouse. If you do not qualify on your own, it may serve you well to collect these benefits using your spouse’s work history.

Qualifying for Social Security retirement benefits

To obtain Social Security retirement benefits through your former partner’s work record, he or she must qualify for these benefits based on his or her work history. If your former spouse is eligible for these benefits, your ability to get them after a divorce depends on whether your marriage lasted at least 10 years.

Receiving Social Security retirement benefits

If you are able to get Social Security retirement benefits based on your ex’s record, you may receive up to 50% of what he or she gets each month as a benefit. It is also worth noting that your decision to collect benefits using your ex’s record does not affect how much money he or she receives each month.

Keep in mind that if you remarry, you are not going to be able to collect benefits through your former spouse’s record any longer.