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Social Security Administration on Survivor Benefits

survivor benefits

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Q. If my husband dies before me, will I collect a Social Security survivor’s benefit or a retirement benefit based on my own work record?

A. If you are both receiving benefits on your own work records, and he dies, you would be eligible to collect a survivor’s benefit based on his record, or you could keep your own retirement benefit. You can collect whichever is larger but not both. For details on survivor benefits, visit and click on “Survivors.”

Source: Social Security Administration

Send your questions to: Ask the Experts, AARP Bulletin,

Carole Fleck is a senior editor at the AARP Bulletin.

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