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DIVORCED SPOUSE: A person who is divorced after at least 10 years of marriage keeps certain benefit rights on the former spouse`s Social Security record. To receive benefits, the divorced spouse must be at least age 62 and his/her former spouse must be entitled to (receiving) benefits.
INDEPENDENTLY DIVORCED SPOUSE: Independently divorced spouse`s benefit are payable regardless of whether the former spouse has applied for benefits or has benefits withheld because he/she is working. However, he or she must be eligible for retirement benefits. To receive benefits, the divorced wife or husband must be at least age 62.
The divorced wife or husband also must have been married to the former spouse for at least 10 years and divorced for at least 2 years. The 2-year divorce requirement can be waived if the former spouse was entitled to benefits in the month before the month of divorce, but was not receiving the benefits because of work deductions.
Benefits usually cannot be paid to a remarried divorced spouse on the former spouse`s record unless the latter marriage ends (whether by death, divorce, or annulment).
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified elder lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local elder attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.