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Can An Ex-Spouse Decline Her Portion Of An Ex-Husband's Benefit?

Can an ex spouse decline her portion off ex husbands benefit

Hi. The answer is basically yes. No one is required to apply for Social Security benefits, so an ex-spouse can simply choose not to apply for benefits. Or, if they've already applied, they could either withdraw their application or waive receiving benefits.

However, when an ex-spouse collects divorced spousal benefits, they aren't paid a portion of the worker's benefit. Divorced spousal benefits are paid in addition to the worker's benefit. Therefore, if an ex-wife elected not to claim benefits from her ex-husband's account it would not increase her ex-husband's benefit rate. Nor would it increase the benefit rates of any children, spouses, or other ex-spouse's who are eligible for benefits on the worker's record. Divorced spousal and divorced survivor benefits don't count toward the family maximum benefit (FMB) amount that can be paid monthly from a worker's account, so it doesn't decrease anyone else's benefit rate if there is an ex-spouse who is collecting benefits on their ex's record.

Best, Jerry

May 19 2023 - 12:20pm
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