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Can your ex-spouse work record boost your Social Security benefits if you are divorced?

It is possible for your ex-spouse’s work record to boost your Social Security benefits if you are divorced and their record is better than yours.

Social Security checks that won’t go out in April

There are conditions in which a former spouse may claim social security support after a divorce. If an ex-spouse of yours makes a claim for SSDI spousal benefits, this will not affect any benefits you are receiving from the SSA. If you are divorced, your ex-spouse can receive benefits based on your record, even if you have remarried, if:

  • Your marriage lasted 10 years or longer.
  • Your ex-spouse is unmarried.
  • Your ex-spouse is age 62 or older.
  • The benefit that your ex-spouse is entitled to receive based on their own work is less than the benefit they would receive based on your work.
  • You are entitled to Social Security retirement or disability benefits.

The family maximum amounts are calculated for each individual household and take into account their earnings history, family size, work status and a variety of other conditions. The SSDI family maximum will be between 100-150% of the individual claimant’s full entitlement.

If their work record is better than yours, in terms of applying for Social Secuirty, then using their record will increase your benefit.

When can you apply for Social Security benefits based on your ex-spouse’s work record?

You can apply for retirement benefits based on your ex-spouse’s entitlement even if they have not applied for retirement yet. However, you must have been divorced for at least two consecutive years prior and be of retirement age yourself if your former spouse has not filed for retirement benefits yet.

If a person looking to claim their former spouse’s benefits has remarried then they will not be able to collect benefits unless the subsequent marriage is terminated by annulment, divorce, or death.