Can I Retire On My Ex's Social Security?

Aug 1 2020 - 8:18am

I'm five years older than my ex husband, who makes nearly three times what I make in income. I turn 65 next week. If i retire at 66, he'll be 61, can I retire on his? If not, and I retire on mine, can I change to his when he turns 66?


You can't qualify for divorced spousal benefits until your ex-spouse is either a) drawing his benefits, or b) is at least age 62 and your divorce has been final for at least 2 years. You couldn't start out drawing your own benefits and then switch drawing just a divorced spousal benefit, but what you could do is file for your own benefits and later file for an excess divorce spousal benefit when you become eligible for those benefits. If 50% of your ex's primary insurance amount (PIA) is higher than your own PIA, what you'll then receive is your own benefit amount plus an excess divorced spousal benefit. The unreduced amount of the excess divorced spousal benefit would be equal to the difference between your own PIA and 50% of your ex's PIA.

You may want to strongly consider using our software to analyze your options so that you can determine your best strategy for maximizing your benefits.

Best, Jerry