In a word, Yes.
If you already receive Social Security based on your spouse's earnings record, you'll continue to receive it as long as you live (or in some cases, until you remarry). If you don't receive Social Security yet, you can apply for a reduced benefit when you turn 62 or wait until your full retirement age if you want to receive an unreduced spousal retirement benefit.
If you've been divorced for more than two years, you can apply as soon as your former spouse becomes eligible for benefits, even he or she hasn't started receiving them (assuming you're at least 62). However, if you've been divorced for less than two years, you must wait to apply for benefits based on your former spouse's earnings record until he or she starts receiving benefits.
You don't have to worry about losing your benefit even if your former spouse remarries. Benefits for a divorced spouse are calculated separately from those of a current spouse.
When using the collaborative dissolution process a CDFA®, Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, will be part of the team. They will help you with questions like this and many more details that a litigating attorney may not know of. Remember, attorneys are trained in the law. Our CDFA’s are trained and certified in all things financial as it relates to divorce. You want to get this right the first time.
Email us for a consultation to see of Collaborative Dissolution is right for you.
This article was submitted by Donald Morris CDFA® and financial advisor. Donald also currently serves as President of winwindivorce.org