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How Social Security Benefits Are Handled After Divorce

 Posted on April 26, 2019 in Divorce

Oakland County asset division lawyerOnce a couple decides to get a divorce, it is important each party do what they can to protect his or her assets in a mutual and respectable way. That may not happen on its own, but a good divorce lawyer can help. A lawyer can help you navigate the best way to untangle your finances so you can leave your marriage on the right financial track. 

In the context of divorce, finances exist well beyond the bank account: 401ks, life insurance, stocks, and others are examples of financial products that need to be divided. Below, we’ll discuss social security benefits and what steps to take to make sure you are getting your maximum benefits.

Under Certain Conditions, You Can Still Collect Spousal Benefits

You are still able to receive your ex-partner’s social security benefits even if your ex is remarried if the following conditions are met:

  • Your marriage lasted over 10 years;
  • You are not married;
  • You are 62 or older;
  • Your ex has social benefits from retirement or disability; and
  • Your benefit is less than your partner’s benefit.

Your benefits can be up to half your spouse’s retirement. If they have not yet applied for benefits, you can still collect payment as long as you have been divorced for at least two years.

Collecting Spousal Benefits after A New Marriage

If you decided to remarry, you can no longer collect your ex-spouse’s benefits, however, you are eligible to collect your new spouse’s benefits. If that marriage ends, you can collect benefits from your first ex-spouse again. If you have more than one ex-spouse with who you meet the criteria above, you can only collect benefits from whichever spouse provides the highest benefit.

The SSA Pays Your Benefits First

Whether you’re collecting spousal benefits, the Social Security Administration will pay your benefits first. You can still collect benefits from your ex-spouse if their earnings were higher and the bulleted points above are satisfied.

Contact a Novi, MI Property Division Attorney

It is important, especially when handling finances, to have a lawyer help you maximize your benefits in a legal way. Contact our hard-working Oakland County asset division lawyers today for a clear and professional opinion regarding your divorce. Elkouri Heath, PLC provides personalized legal services for those going through a divorce. We have many satisfied clients. For a free initial consultation, contact 248-344-9700. 




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