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y name is***** and I will be helping you with your question today. This is for informational purposes only and does not establish an attorney client relationship.
Yes he could, he cannot take the spousal benefit until you start taking your retirement benefit. The law recently changed eliminating the "file and suspend" on May 1, 2016 which neither of your would be eligible for. You are grandfathered into the restricted benefit if your spouse was 62 by December 31, 2015. The restricted benefit would be elected at full retirement age. Essentially he could take his benefit now and then at full retirement restrict his benefit and only elect to take the spousal benefit. This would mean that his benefit would be suspended and he could receive your higher spousal benefit (this would happen anyway as he would take the higher of the spousal benefit and the normal retirement benefit) but this restriction would allow your spouse to gain credits from age 66-70 (he would gain 8% to his benefit for each year). So to answer your question yes he can take his early retirement now (subject to the early retirement reduction) and then switch to your higher spousal benefit when you choose to take your retirement benefit.
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Yes, he would not be grandfathered into the restricted benefit as he had to turn 62 by Dec. 31, 2015. He will not be able to increase his benefits when he hits full retirement age as he will be forced to take the higher of 1) his spousal benefits 2) his normal retirement. Therefore he would not be able to gain credits from ages 66-70. He is still free to take the spousal benefit at that time (it would be 50% of your benefit only if you elected at that time) if it is higher than his normal retirement benefit. So the only difference is he cannot restrict his benefit and choose to only take the spousal benefit.