Ending a marriage can be a frightening yet necessary experience. For example, Maggie feared she would not be able to support herself after she and her husband split up. Her Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits might not be enough. In fact, she was worried that she would lose her SSDI after divorce.
Let’s look at several scenarios concerning receiving SSDI after a divorce. What matters most is how you qualified for SSDI in the first place.
Qualifying for SSDI on Your Own
The Social Security Administration (Social Security) reviews applications for SSDI benefits. They look for the following:
- Did you work in jobs covered by Social Security?
- Do you have a serious medical condition that meets the definition of disability?
Here, marital status does not matter. Social Security is just looking to make sure you have earned enough work credits. Some of the work credits must have been earned in a time period immediately before you became disabled.
Your medical condition also has nothing to do with whether you are single, married, or divorced. Social Security will look to make sure your condition meets by asking the following questions:
Are you working and earning more than the monthly earnings limit?
Is your condition “severe”?
Is your condition found in the list of disabling conditions?
Can you do the work you did previously?
Can you do any other type of work?
The answers to these questions, along with supporting documents, could determine whether you will receive SSDI benefits.
Qualifying for SSDI on Your Spouse’s Record
You cannot qualify for SSDI based on your spouse’s work history. So your SSDI after divorce probably will not change because your eligibility hinges only on you.
However, you might receive spousal benefits if you are age 62 or older. Also, survivor benefits might be available if your spouse dies. Divorce is a little more complicated, so depending on your spouse’s work history to get benefits might not be the best idea.
SSDI After Divorce
If you are receiving spousal SSDI benefits, your divorce might be a problem. But in some cases, benefits could continue:
- You and your spouse were married for ten years or more before divorcing;
- You or your ex are 62 years or older and have not remarried.
Divorce can complicate many legal matters. Talk to someone at Social Security or a Social Security attorney to learn more about whether you can SSDI after a divorce.
Government Benefits Like SSDI Can Be Difficult Whether You Are Married or Divorced.
The application process can be long and frustrating, so you need someone on your side. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have more than 50 years’ experience. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.