Benefits of Social Security for senior divorcees

An online advice column has highlighted some of the monetary benefits divorced seniors can take advantage of through Social Security.

In a recent column on, a reader who signed off as "Happily Single" asked the website what Social Security benefits they may be eligible for from a previous marriage.

Divorced seniors can collect up to 50 percent of their ex-spouse's Social Security retirement benefit from their work record, according to the column.

Benefits of Social Security for senior divorcees However, the senior must be at least 62 years old and have been married for at least 10 years. The senior must also not be currently married.

Those who qualify for their own Social Security benefit from work will receive the highest of the two payments when compared to their ex-spouse's, states the column. Also, a second marriage will nullify one's rights to divorcee benefits.

However, there is a different set of rules for a divorced survivor, which applies if one's spouse dies after ten years of marriage, said. This is worth up to 100 percent of what one's spouse would have gotten through Social Security and can be received by the survivor at the age of 60.

Seniors who qualify are urged to contact the national Social Security office.

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