Ask Terry Questions Divorced Spousal SS Benefit

Divorced Spousal SS Benefit

By Terry Savage on January 23, 2024 | Wild Card

My friend was married for 15+ years and has been divorced from her husband 25+ years. Both she and her ex are full retirement age. When she applied for the 50% spouse benefit, she was denied because she makes too much money (she has a teacher’s pension). Is there a limit on her income to receive the spousal benefit?

Terry Says

I just checked with SS guru (and my co-author of Social Security Horror Stories) Larry Kotlikoff. Social Security often makes mistakes — this was one of them.
The WEP — windfall elimination provision — could reduce, but not eliminate all her ex-spousal benefits.
I suggest you go to his website — — and use the calculator there to find out what you are REALLY owed!
And please write back and let me know what happens!



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