Some married couples in Florida who end up divorced are older. As a result, Social Security benefits could come into play. If you get a gray divorce, it’s important to know how you can qualify for your former spouse’s Social Security benefits.
Social Security and divorce
Depending on one spouse’s earnings and other criteria, the other might be eligible to collect Social Security benefits after a divorce. The individual must be at least 62 years old and the marriage must have lasted for 10 years or longer. Eligibility kicks in once the former spouses have been divorced for at least two consecutive years by the time one party becomes qualified for benefits but has not yet applied for them.
Applying for Social Security benefits after divorce
If all of the above criteria apply to your situation, you can apply for benefits from your former spouse’s Social Security online or in person at your local Social Security office. In order to do that, you must be able to provide information such as your former spouse’s Social Security number or their birthdate, birthplace and the names of their parents.
The Social Security Administration automatically assumes you are also applying for benefits toward your own record, but you could receive whichever is the higher one. If your benefits are lower, you might be paid a specific amount toward your record and then make up the difference with your former spouse’s Social Security benefits.
Both heterosexual and same-sex former spouses may be eligible for Social Security benefits. However, individuals who remarry cannot recover these benefits. If you are trying to get your former spouse’s Social Security and they remarry, you can still be eligible.
If your former spouse dies, you may be able to recover Social Security death benefits for the rest of your life.