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Social Security in Divorce

Dallas Divorce Attorneys Helping People Protect Their Interests

Most people who work pay Social Security taxes on their earnings. When they reach a certain age, they typically will collect Social Security retirement benefits. People who do not work outside the home or do not earn a substantial income may not be eligible for such benefits based on their own earnings but may qualify for Social Security retirement benefits based on their spouse’s employment history. A question that commonly arises when older individuals or parties without an income decide to divorce is whether the economically disadvantaged spouse can still recover Social Security retirement benefits. If you want to learn more about Social Security in divorce and how your rights may be impacted by the decision to end your marriage, you should speak to a lawyer promptly. The knowledgeable Dallas divorce attorneys of McClure Law Group have ample experience helping parties resolve complicated divorce issues, and, if you hire us, we will work tirelessly to help you seek your desired result.

Social Security in Divorce

Younger couples who decide to end their marriage often do not consider Social Security retirement benefits. As it is a substantial source of income for older parties, though, they often worry about how their pending divorce may impact their rights with regard to such benefits. Currently, the law allows people to collect Social Security retirement benefits based on their spouse’s work history. Parties maintain this right, even if they divorce, without having to take any additional action.

People who want to collect Social Security retirement benefits based on their ex-spouse’s work history must meet certain qualifications, however. First, they must have been married for at least ten years. Secondly, they typically must be at least 62 years old. If their former spouse has passed away, however, they can collect Social Security retirement benefits as a surviving divorced spouse if they are at least 60 years old. If a person is deemed disabled under the Social Security guidelines and their former spouse is deceased, they can collect Social Security retirement benefits at the age of 50. Finally, their divorce must be final for at least two years before they can collect benefits.

People who remarry generally cannot collect Social Security retirement benefits based on their first spouse’s income unless their second spouse dies or their second marriage ends in divorce. In such instances, the person can choose which of their spouses they collect benefits from, as long as the first marriage lasted ten years and the second marriage lasted at least nine months. Notably, a person can recover Social Security retirement benefits based on their former spouse’s work history, regardless of whether the former spouse remarries.

Amount of Social Security Retirement Benefits Available After Divorce

Typically, people collecting Social Security retirement benefits as divorced spouses will receive 50% of the amount of their former spouse’s benefits unless the former spouse is deceased, in which case they will receive the entire amount. They do not need to obtain permission from their former spouse before filing for benefits, and their former spouse will not be notified that they are receiving benefits. Further, their recovery of Social Security retirement benefits will have no impact on the amount of benefits available for their former spouse.

Consult a Dedicated Dallas Attorney Today

People who did not work throughout their marriage may be at a financial disadvantage if they divorce, but in some cases, they may be eligible to collect Social Security retirement benefits based on their former spouse’s income. If you intend to end your marriage and have questions about Social Security in divorce, it is prudent to consult an attorney as soon as possible. The dedicated Dallas lawyers of McClure Law Group are proficient at helping people obtain favorable outcomes in divorce proceedings, and if you hire us, we will advocate assertively on your behalf. Our main office is in Dallas, and we are available to meet clients for consultations at our Collin-County office in Plano. We regularly represent parties in divorce cases in Dallas, Rockwall, Fort Worth, McKinney, Richardson, Frisco, Garland, and Irving. We also represent parties with family-law matters in cities in Dallas, Denton, Collin, Tarrant, Rockwall, and Grayson Counties. You can contact us by calling us at 214.692.8200 or using our online form to set up a confidential meeting.

Client Reviews
"McClure Law Group was very professional and responsive. They listened to my concerns and desires as it pertains to the service requested and I'm very pleased." Jade Nguyen
"Kelly and her team are always a pleasure to work with, and their work product always exceeds one’s expectations." George Tamke
"When I most needed professional, good quality responses McClure Law Group was there. Thank you for the service that I have received from everyone!" Norma Charles
"McClure Law Group’s team is very responsive! I have very much appreciated their communication. They are always on top of what is happening and return my calls or emails quickly." Brie Cherry
"Kelly McClure has been representing me for the past several years and has been an amazing advocate, confidant and sounding board. She is always available by phone, even when she is on vacation. She has answered my questions on weekends and always given me an honest opinion. I highly recommend this group to anyone." Heather Bell
"The McClure Law Group helped me through a very difficult divorce and they definitely had my back every step of the way. I couldn’t recommend the team enough!" Shell A.
"I could not be happier to have had McClure Law. I truly appreciate their accessibility and patience. I can tell they are very knowledgeable, and I trust their guidance. I am SO thankful I went with great lawyers to handle my family case." Victor Lollar
"Kelly is detailed oriented and she truly cares about her clients. Her knowledge of the laws and her ability to get a case resolved make her stand far above others. I highly recommend McClure for your family law needs!" Peter Morgan