SS Survivor Benefits

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TinyTim
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SS Survivor Benefits

Post by TinyTim »

I am waiting until next year to collect the maximum Social Security Benefit at age 70. If I predecease my wife, will she receive the full amount of my Social Security benefit (assuming it is the larger than her benefit)?
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BL
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by BL »

Yes, AFAIK, she will collect what you are receiving if she is at least ~FRA.
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TinyTim
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by TinyTim »

Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Dantes
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by Dantes »

A surviving widow or widower who is at least at full retirement age would get the amount of benefits their spouse would be entitled to if still alive.
robertalpert
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by robertalpert »

TinyTim wrote:Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Assuming you're married more than 10-years; Then her benefit for drawing social security based on your earnings record was maxed when you reached age-66.
But waiting till age-70 will increase your benefit.
vtMaps
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by vtMaps »

TinyTim wrote:I am waiting until next year to collect the maximum Social Security Benefit at age 70. If I predecease my wife, will she receive the full amount of my Social Security benefit (assuming it is the larger than her benefit)?
Yes, assuming you live to age 70. If you die before you start collecting benefits at age 70, she will get the benefits that you would have gotten if you had started benefits the day you died.

--vtMaps
Historical Fact: Justin Smith Morrill represented Vermont in congress, had a dog named 'Trump', and wrote legislation establishing the Land Grant Colleges.
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David Jay
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by David Jay »

All the above replies are correct if we assume that you have the higher benefit. The higher spousal benefit is what the survivor receives. So if she has the higher benefit then her benefit is unchanged at your passing.
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pezblanco
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by pezblanco »

robertalpert wrote:
TinyTim wrote:Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Assuming you're married more than 10-years; Then her benefit for drawing social security based on your earnings record was maxed when you reached age-66.
But waiting till age-70 will increase your benefit.
Assuming you're married more than 9 months.. The 10 year requirement is the marriage duration to receive divorced spouse benefits.
kaneohe
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by kaneohe »

pezblanco wrote:
robertalpert wrote:
TinyTim wrote:Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Assuming you're married more than 10-years; Then her benefit for drawing social security based on your earnings record was maxed when you reached age-66.
But waiting till age-70 will increase your benefit.
Assuming you're married more than 9 months.. The 10 year requirement is the marriage duration to receive divorced spouse benefits.
Also the bolded part above.......about maxing at FRA..........doesn't that pertain to the 50% spousal benefit (while OP is alive) and not to the 100% survivor benefit?
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pezblanco
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by pezblanco »

kaneohe wrote:
pezblanco wrote:
robertalpert wrote:
TinyTim wrote:Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Assuming you're married more than 10-years; Then her benefit for drawing social security based on your earnings record was maxed when you reached age-66.
But waiting till age-70 will increase your benefit.
Assuming you're married more than 9 months.. The 10 year requirement is the marriage duration to receive divorced spouse benefits.
Also the bolded part above.......about maxing at FRA..........doesn't that pertain to the 50% spousal benefit (while OP is alive) and not to the 100% survivor benefit?
Yes, that too. The other posters got that part correct and so I didn't address it. The marriage duration requirements are varied and sometimes trip people up.
JohnFiscal
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by JohnFiscal »

I had the same question. My spouse will get benefits equal to 50% of my FRA benefit once she reaches her FRA. This is so even if I delay my own SS benefit until beyond my FRA (as my own wife is more than 10 years younger than me, and has no SS on her own, I am not going to get into any alternative strategies). These are for the duration of my life span.

Once I die, she is my survivor and gets survivor's benefits, which is 100% of the benefit I was receiving, which includes any additional benefit if I delay my own SS benefit.

This is discussed in thread viewtopic.php?p=2165381#p2165381 and I received a PM with good information from an old hand on board. The thread has a link to Congressional Research Service report with related discussion.
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HueyLD
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by HueyLD »

Assuming you're married more than 9 months.. The 10 year requirement is the marriage duration to receive divorced spouse benefits.
For the nine months part, it can be less than nine months if the death of the insured is accidental. Yes, accidental only.
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TinyTim
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by TinyTim »

Thanks for replying to my question. From the answers, here is what I can plan for:

At age 70, SSA benefit for me starts at $3100 monthly. My wife, to whom I have been married for decades, will have a much lower Social Security benefit than I. So whatever monthly benefit I am receiving at my decease, assuming I precede my wife, will then be paid to her.
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pezblanco
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Re: SS Survivor Benefits

Post by pezblanco »

HueyLD wrote:
Assuming you're married more than 9 months.. The 10 year requirement is the marriage duration to receive divorced spouse benefits.
For the nine months part, it can be less than nine months if the death of the insured is accidental. Yes, accidental only.

DId not know that! Thank you.
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