After a divorce, are you eligible for your ex's Social Security benefits?

1 min read


  • As a former spouse you can receive benefits based on your ex’s work record.
  • But there are similarities and differences in the eligibility rules for regular spousal benefits and divorced spousal benefits.
  • You are also eligible for retirement benefits of your own.

If you’re among the hundreds of thousands of couples who get divorced each year you might wonder whether you’ll be eligible to collect spousal Social Security benefits on your ex’s work record.

The answer: It depends.

“There are similarities and differences in the eligibility rules for regular spousal benefits and those for divorced spousal benefits, says Kurt Czarnowski, a principal with Czarnowski Consulting, a retirement planning firm.

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