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Social Security provides a retirement income for seniors who have stopped working or reached a certain age. However, did you know that benefits are also available to dependents of those retirees? While Social Security spousal benefits can be a bit complicated, they can provide a welcome safety net to spouses, both while their partners are alive and after they pass away.

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1. Who's Eligible for Social Security Spousal Benefits?

You're eligible for Social Security spousal benefits if you're at least 62, or if, at any age, you're the primary caregiver of a child who's disabled or 16 or younger. In addition, you must meet another condition:

  • You're currently married to someone who's already receiving Social Security benefits, OR
  • You were once married for at least ten years to someone who is at least 62 and is eligible to receive Social Security benefits, and you didn't remarry until you were at least 60.
  • Notice that in the case of ex-spouses, your ex doesn't have to have filed for their benefits for you to receive your spousal benefits.

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