I get disability. Will I get my husband’s Social Security one day?

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Q. I have been collecting Social Security disability now for more than a decade. I understand that my benefits would transfer over to Social Security retirement benefits at retirement age. However, I do not qualify for retirement benefits because I wasn’t able to work because of my disability. Will I lose it when I hit retirement age? I will be 64 this year and my husband will be 80.
— Married

A. It’s a great question.

But don’t worry. While your benefits will change, you won’t lose them.

If you do not qualify for a benefit based on your earnings history, you will qualify for a spousal benefit based on your husband’s earnings, said Jody D’Agostini, a certified financial planner with Equitable Advisors/The Falcon Financial Group in Morristown.

“The amount that you will collect is dependent upon when your husband claimed, and when you claim. You will receive half of that amount,” she said. “The maximum amount you could receive occurs if your husband waited to collect his benefit until his full retirement age.”

If your husband predeceases you, you will collect the full amount that he was collecting at that time, D’Agostini said.

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This story was originally published on April 15, 2022.

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