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Ask Lane Your Own Question
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 12061
Experience:  Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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I am a housewife who has been married 40 years. My

Customer Question

I am a housewife who has been married for over 40 years. My husband is self employed and we filed jointly. Do I have social security benefits?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Lev replied 2 years ago.
Hi and welcome to our site!You do qualify for social security benefits based on your spouse's earning records.A Social Security benefit for a spouse is called a “spousal benefit”. As a spouse - you may be able to get benefits if you are at least 62 years of age and your spouse is receiving or eligible for retirement or disability benefits. You can also qualify for Medicare at age 65. Generally - your benefits are 50% of your spouse's benefits.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I also have a mental problem which has made it impossible to work at this time. I was diagnosed when I was 33. I am 63. My shrink said I was qualified for disability x 50: then he later said that they never give disability to mental problems. I am worried because I am having more problems with it now. Also, when my father retired my mother received the same amount of social security......Thank you......I also just received a notice from SS that since I stopped working I had 0's in my earnings column.....

Expert:  Lev replied 2 years ago.
As I am aware - social security disability benefits are awarded to those with medical mental conditions.I may not comment about your specific conditions as that must be discussed with your doctor. So if you doctor finds your medical condition to qualify for disability claim - you may want to apply.However - if you personally did not work - you would not qualify for social security disability benefits - but if you are a low income person - you might qualify for Supplemental Security disability benefits - that are both - needs based and based on medical condition.However - you still may qualify for spousal benefits - and you do qualify after the age 62.You will receive 50% of the benefits to which your spouse is eligible,but if you choose to receive benefits before your full retirement age (that is 66) - your benefits will be reduced.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

My husband is 68 and started his ss benefits at 63, receiving a little over $1500.00 monthy. You had said that I qualified for spousal benefits, 50% as a housewife. Should I file with a disability lawyer for benefits or file first with Social Security. Why do I only get half of what he receives as we received the monies jointly.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
I can't wait half an hour for answers to a question or two.
Expert:  Lane replied 2 years ago.
I think the problem here is that no one has made a distinction between the two different TYPES of social security.
(1) Social Security Disability, and
(2) Social Security retirement.
Social Security retirement (which is based on 1/2 of your husband's benefit - Spousal SS retirement) IS available to you once you turn retirement age.
Social Security Disability is only available to those who DO have enough earnings in the system AND qualify based on not being able to hold a job at ANY level.
Don't have ALL the information here, but likely you qualify for the spousal retirement benefit, and you do not qualify for SS disability.
Qualifying for the spousal RETIREMENT benefit, of course, requires that you have arrived at one of the retirement ages.
Let me know if you have questions...

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