With, roughly, 50% of marriages ending in divorce in this country, it is critical that divorced spouses “know their rights” as it relates to the Social Security retirement system. As an IEDS, you have the right to access, from your former spouse’s earnings record, living and death benefits in the form of excess spousal and survivor benefits.
Unlike married couples, IEDS’s still reserve the right to successfully file a “Restricted Application for Spousal Benefits Only” so long as they were born on 1/1/54 or prior and their former spouse has attained age 62. The former spouse, unlike in the situation of a married couple, need not to be collecting a Social Security retirement benefit for the first spouse to begin receiving 50% of the former spouses PIA in the form of a “spousal benefit”.
The spouse receiving the spousal benefit will see their own benefit continue to grow vis a vi DRC’s (Delayed Retirement Credits) until age 70 at which time, if the numbers workout, the spouse collecting the spousal benefit may drop the spousal in favor of their own, optimized, age 70, benefit value.