Can My Non-Citizen Parnter Receive a Widow's Benefit Based on My Record?

Jul 1 2016 - 12:45pm

I'm 64 years old, an American citizen residing in Israel, and have been receiving Social Security Benefits for the past year and a half. I have a partner (female), who is not an American citizen and is currently 60 years old. We have been living together for 11 years following the passing of my late wife. My question is, in the event of my death, would my partner be eligible to continue receiving all or part of my monthly benefit? If so, how would she need to provide evidence of our partnership? Thanks, Yuval

Yuval, if you're not legally married, there can be no spousal or widow's benefits for your partner. As far as Social Security is concerned, you're two single individuals. If you do get legally married, after a year your non-citizen wife would be able to receive both a spousal benefit and in the even of your death, a widow's benefit if you were married at least 9 months. Thanks, John