The goal of the Social Security program is to provide financial security for many Americans. You put money into it while you're working, and when you retire or become disabled, it becomes available. Some people use these benefits as a supplement to their income, while others rely solely on Social Security benefits. Your spouse can start receiving Social Security payments before you do if they are older than you are. This additional income could be very important to your financial stability.
But it's still crucial to prepare for the worst-case situation. What happens to your spouse's Social Security payments after death is a topic no one wants to think about. You can still get them, in short, but there are certain restrictions. Although Social Security's website has a comprehensive Survivors section, here are the essentials. Typically, Social Security first disburses a $255 one-time death payment upon the passing of your spouse. The Social Security survivor benefits can then be started. Based on a few variables, the government determines how much Social Security you can get from your deceased spouse.
If your spouse was already receiving benefits at the time of death, you will get the same amount along with any cost of living adjustments that may have been made if enough time had gone between the date of the death and the application. You will continue to receive benefits even if your spouse started taking Social Security early. However, the amount of these benefits is reduced based on what the spouse who had been receiving them would have received if they had been alive. If someone files for benefits before retirement age, Social Security reduces them unless there are exceptional circumstances.
When you reach retirement age, you'll be entitled to 100% of your spouse's Social Security benefits if they died before ever applying for them. You cannot, however, receive both your own Social Security payments and those of your husband. Fortunately, the government gives you permission to take the most lucrative one. Other considerations include:
- If you are disabled, your survivor benefits may begin to accrue earlier than the usual age of 62, at age 50. However, your benefits will be diminished by roughly 28.5%.
- If you are remarried before turning 60, you lose your right to survivor benefits. But if you get divorced or get widowed again, you can once more receive those survivor benefits.
- You are eligible for the highest-paying Social Security survivor benefits if you have been bereaved more than once.
- You can still receive your survivor benefits if you get remarried after turning 60.
- As long as you were married for more than ten years and didn't remarry, you are still eligible to get survivor benefits even if you and your spouse were divorced at the time of their death.
Everybody wants to enjoy their retirement years with their spouse and without too many financial concerns. To assist us with it, the Social Security system was created. However, if you do become a widow, you can still collect your deceased spouse's Social Security benefits.