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Ask Christopher B, Esq. Your Own Question
Christopher B, Esq.
Christopher B, Esq., Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 2982
Experience:  associate attorney
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I am 68 and my wife is 65. We both are eligible benefits. If

Customer Question

I am 68 and my wife is 65. We both are eligible for SS benefits. If I file and suspend will my wife be able to collect spousal benefits as well as her own when she reaches 66?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Christopher B, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

My 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.

That is not the way the spousal benefit works. She will not receive both benefits simultaneously and these benefits do not stack. If she has not elected to take her benefit yet, she can file a "restricted benefit" at full retirement age (age 66 for her) and elect to take only the spousal benefit (this is 50% of your benefit when she is at full retirement age). This will allow her to increase her benefit until age 70 (mandatory retirement age) and receive 8% credits per year. This process is being eliminated by HR 1314 that goes into place on May 1, 2016 (it is eliminating the file and suspend as well so you need to suspend before this date) but she is grandfathered into the restricted benefit if she was age 62 by December 31, 2015. This type of election would give you the most bang for your buck if you can afford the decreased benefit until age 70. To answer your question, no she cannot receive both, as she can only receive the higher of the spousal benefit (50% of your benefit) and her normal retirement benefit and you might think about taking advantage of the restricted benefit (again this is elected at full retirement age not before May 1).

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Expert:  Christopher B, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Just checking back in, do you have any further questions?