All relationships are unique. That uniqueness extends also to divorce circumstances. The specific circumstances of one’s divorce can lead to different outcomes for one’s Social Security benefits. Luckily, the Social Security Administration had anticipated the wide variety of life circumstances and has developed rules that govern the various after-marriage situations that can apply to Wyoming residents.
In order for an ex-spouse to claim on their ex’s work record, the two must have been married for 10 years. In the case that a couple was married, broke up, remarried, and broke up again, they might be able to claim that they were married for 10 years. In order for the two marriages to count for the 10-year quota, they couple must have remarried within one calendar year of the first dissolution.
A spouse can make a claim on another spouse’s record, and then file for divorce afterward, and usually that claim cannot be changed and the ex-spouse cannot suspend benefits. There is a 12-month period in which the benefits can be suspended in order to allow an increased amount of benefits to be claimed later, but once that window is passed, a person can only suspend benefits once they have reached full retirement age. A person is not able to rescind their ex-spouse’s benefits after the breakup of the marriage.
Social Security rules can be intimidating, and may get even more so after a divorce. An individual in Wyoming may be looking for guidance on how to maximize his or her financial situation after the end of the marriage. A family law attorney has the skills and the experience to be able to guide a person through the trickier aspects of divorce.
Source: investmentnews.com, “Surprising Social Security rules on divorce“, Mary Beth Franklin, Aug. 16, 2017