Wednesday, March 6, 2013

What You Need to Know about Divorce’s Role in Claiming For Social Security Benefits

Divorce plays a significant role in claiming Social Security Disability retirement benefits. Unfortunately, not everyone qualifies as a divorced spouse for the Social Security benefits. Therefore, a Los Angeles social security disability lawyer provided several facts you need to know about the role of divorce in claiming benefits.

Fortunately, a divorced spouse is entitled for up to one half of the ex-spouse’s full retirement benefits. In addition, it can also be possible for the estranged spouse to switch from the former spouse benefit later to a higher benefit based on one’s own work history.

In order to qualify for your ex-spouse’s retirement benefits you must qualify under the Social Security Administration’s strict requirements as follow:

Basically, as a claimant, you must be 62 years of age or older. Also, your marriage must have lasted at least a decade or longer.

Moreover, following the divorce, you must not be married. However, the agency provided a little consideration to those who remarried following the divorce. A former spouse can still be once again entitled for an ex-spouse’s benefits once the recent marriage ended by death, divorce, or annulment.

Meanwhile, in case that your ex-spouse did not apply for Social Security Retirement benefits despite his or her being entitled for the claim, you may still qualify for the benefit if you have been divorced for at least a couple of years.

However, the benefit that you are entitled to receive based on your own work history should be less than the benefit that you would receive based on your ex-spouse’s work history.

Furthermore, any benefits that you will receive will not in any way affect the amount of benefits that your former spouse or his or her current partner in life may receive. In fact, your former spouse could never even be aware that you are claiming benefits out of his or her credit. Also, if your ex-spouse delays receiving his or her benefits, your benefits will not include any delayed benefit credits that he or she may receive.

Another important thing that you must be aware as a former spouse is that you can apply for a surviving spouse benefits at a younger age like 60 instead of 62, or if disabled, between age 50 and 60.

Apparently, taking some time to explore such social security’s guidelines is worth spending the time, so be very diligent.