Q&A: Exes and Social Security benefits

Dear Liz: I receive Social Security. My recently divorced girlfriend receives Social Security from her ex-husband who is still living. If we were to get married, would either of us lose part or all of our Social Security benefits? It seems like a simple, straightforward question, but every Social Security representative I speak with by phone or in person gives me a different answer. My girlfriend did not work long enough to earn her own Social Security benefits. She was married over 30 years and is over 60.

Answer: Your girlfriend would lose her divorced spousal benefits if she remarries, but she could then qualify for spousal benefits based on your earnings record. Your benefits would not be affected. A Social Security representative should be able to calculate how much her benefit would change.

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  1. I cannot get a straight answer to my question. I receive spousal SS and I am still working. We are divorced for many years. I have a government job that has not pd in soc sec and I have been there 35 years. I will get a government pension. What happens to my ss after I retire. I need the money and I’d like an answer from some one who knows

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