Am I Entitled To Any Of My Husband's Benefits Now?

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Jan 18 2019 - 11:49am

I've been married since 1987. As far as I know we have never been legally separated or divorced. We parted ways in 2003 not keeping in touch with other. I recently received a text from him telling me that he is living in Virginia and that we are still married. The reason that we split up was 1. He was always running around 2. He had a bad drug habit 3. I was sick and was missing a lot of work. It put us in a financial bind.
I've been on SSI since approximately 2010 I believe. I am 55 yrs old and he will be 59 this yr.
Since we are still married 31 yrs and I am disabled on SSI, even though we don't live together, am I entitled to any of his benefits now? Thank you for your time.

Hi,

Assuming that you don't have an eligible child in your care, you couldn't currently receive any benefits from your husband's Social Security record. The earliest that you could potentially qualify for spousal benefits is age 62, and your husband would have to be drawing his benefits in order for you to be eligible for benefits on his record.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a needs based program intended as a last resort source of income for people who are disabled, blind, or at least age 65. One of the conditions for SSI eligibility is that you must file for any other benefits for which you may be eligible, so it sounds like you'll be required to file for Social Security spousal benefits as soon as you're eligible. Your SSI payments will then be reduced roughly dollar for dollar by the amount of your Social Security spousal benefits.

Best, Jerry