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LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 37684
Experience:  I have 30 years of legal and litigation experience, including representing clients before the U.S. Social Security Administration.
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I asked if I am entitled to an increase in benefits based on

Customer Question

I asked if I am entitled to an increase in benefits based on the higher income of my former wife. Our Marriage was from 06/30/73 to 05/21 92.
I married my current wife in 1998 and started early S.S. benefits in 2012. Your original answer mentioned "I'";mCustomer and can assist." What does that statement mean?
I waited in my local S.S. office for an hour to get a 30 second robotic answer from a young S.S. employee . "If you marry someone else you are not eligible to claim benefits from a previous spouse."
Is her curt answer accurate?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  LawTalk replied 2 years ago.
Good evening,
I'm Doug, and I'm sorry to hear of the confusion. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.
Unfortunately, you received correct, albeit somewhat rude, information.
While you were married long enough to qualify for an ex-spouse benefit, there is also a requirement that in order to be eligible for an ex-spouse benefit you may not be presently remarried. If in the future you find yourself again not married, either because of divorce or death, then you would again qualify for an ex-spouse benefit.
So, as long as you remain remarried, you will not qualify for an ex-spouse retirement benefit. You are however entitled to your own retirement benefit or if you have been remarried at least one year you may seek a spouse benefit based on your present spouse's lifetime earnings---whichever results in a greater benefit to you.
You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.
Please remember to rate my service to you when our communication is completed.
I wish you and yours the best in 2015,