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AARP's Social Security Q&A Tool

I am a widow. Can I collect Social Security on my own work record at 62 then switch to a widow's benefit from my late husband's record at 66?

En español | You can chose to file for only a retirement benefit at age 62 and wait to file for a survivor benefit. Alternatively, you can chose to file for the survivor benefit and wait to receive your own retirement benefit. You should contact the Social Security Administration and ask which strategy would provide you with the greatest benefits (most likely, waiting to receive the survivor benefits would be the optimal strategy, however, it depends on the earnings of both spouses).

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