Are You Eligible To Receive Spousal Retirement Benefits After A Divorce?

The short answer is “Maybe.” According to the Social Security Administration, you are eligible to receive benefits on your ex-spouse’s retirement benefits if you meet the required conditions. The first prerequisite is that you must have been married for at least 10 years. You must also be at least 62 years old and unmarried. Finally, you must not be entitled to a higher benefit than your ex-spouse.

Likewise there are conditions for your ex-spouse. He or she must be eligible to receive retirement benefits – whether they have been applied for or not. Please note, however; that if the benefits had not been applied for, the divorce must be at least two years old. Should you ex-spouse die, you would still be eligible if you are at least 60 years old or if you are at least 50 and disabled.

What If My Spouse Remarries?

If your spouse remarries, this will not affect your eligibility. If you remarry, you typically cannot collect benefits on your former spouse unless your later marriage ends – whether in death, annulment, or divorce. The Social Security Administration website has many tools to determine full retirement age and the benefits and penalties of retiring early or later.

If you have further questions, we at Jones Law Firm, PC are prepared to assist you. Our Denver family law attorneys share many years of experience and can help you navigate this complex legal area. Get in touch with us today to find out more!


The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

Our team includes attorneys licensed to practice in multiple states including April D. Jones in California, Patrick G. Barkman in Texas, the Cherokee Nation, the Northern District of Texas, and the District of Colorado (United States Court of Appeals 10th and 5th Circuit).