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Ask the Experts

Ex-Wife Drawing My Social Security Benefit

Q. I think my ex-wife qualifies for a Social Security benefit based on my earnings. We were married for 15 years. Will a benefit to my ex-wife reduce the benefit for my current wife?

A. Not to worry. Your current wife’s benefits are unaffected no matter how many ex-wives are eligible to collect on your record.

If your previous marriage lasted at least 10 years, you’ve been divorced for at least two years, and your ex-wife is at least 62 years old and hasn’t remarried, she can collect a benefit based on your work record as soon as you’re eligible for Social Security, even if you haven’t yet filed for it. She is also entitled to a widow’s benefit.

For more information, go to

Source: The Social Security Administration

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