Spousal Social Security Retirement Benefits Eligibility

Individuals whose husbands or wives have worked in jobs covered by Social Security are eligible for social security benefits. They are eligible for up to a maximum of 50% of the amount their spouse can claim when they retire. Nonetheless, there are certain eligibility criteria and supporting documents that you must comply before you can claim the spouse benefits you are due.

Eligibility Qualifications

In able for you to receive the Social Security spousal benefits, you must be 62 years old, or older. If you are under 62 years of age, but are caring for a child under 16 years of age and whose name is reflected on your spouse's Social Security benefit record, you may be qualified to file for the benefits. A divorced spouse can only become eligible if he or she was married to the beneficiary for a minimum of 10 years, did not remarry, and is already 62 years old or older.

Required Documents


Along with your application for spousal benefits are supplemental documents showing proof of your relationship and some financial information. You will be required to furnish the original and photocopies of the following documentation:

  • marriage certificate
  • divorce decree (if applies to your situation)
  • birth certificate or other type of birth records
  • proof of citizenship for naturalized applicants or legal alien papers
  • most recent W2s or self-employment income tax returns
  • military discharge records for people serving the U.S. military
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