I've been on disability since 2009. My question is do I have to wait until 62 to get the ex spouse SS benefits since I'm disabled? I'm 60 now. If I live in another country, do I have to be in the US to file for it? If I understand, I can get the ex-spouse benifit OR mine,but not both? I thought a certain percentage would be added to my disability.
Thank you for your time,
Hi Charla. Assuming that your ex-spouse is still living, then the answer is yes. You can't qualify for divorced spousal benefits on the record of a living ex-spouse any earlier than at age 62 even if you're disabled. And, if you start drawing divorced spousal benefits prior to full retirement age (FRA) your benefit rate will be reduced for age.
However, if your ex-spouse is deceased, then you could potentially qualify for disabled widow's benefits (DWB) as early as age 50. Those benefits are also reduced for age if you start drawing them prior to FRA, but if you start drawing DWB or regular widow's benefits after or concurrently with Social Security disability (SSDI) benefits then the reduction for age applied to your survivor benefit rate is removed when you reach FRA.