Will My Relative's Wife Receive A Reduced Widow's Benefit Because She Filed For Her Own Benefits At Age 62?

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Feb 21 2020 - 4:34pm

Hi Larry: My relative is currently age 86 and his wife is age 84. He started collecting Social Security at age 65, and receives a current monthly benefit amount of $2,481.90, and she filed early, at age 62, for her Social Security benefit; her current benefit amount is $996.90.

Our question relates to the spousal benefit that his wife will receive if my relative passes away before his wife does. Basically, will his wife receive a net monthly benefit amount that is LOWER than my relative's total monthly amount because his wife claimed her benefit early, or will it be the SAME amount that my relative receives monthly?

I've looked around on the internet for an answer to this question, and we tried the Social Security website with no luck either.

Hi,

No, the fact that the wife in your question took her own benefits early will not cause her widow's rate to be reduced for age. Since she's now over full retirement age (FRA), she would qualify for her husband's full benefit rate as a survivor. She won't get his full rate plus her own though, just the higher of the 2 amounts.

Best, Jerry