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Am I Eligible for Social Security Benefits as a Surviving Spouse?

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Social Security survivor benefits present an important source of income for many individuals. But, there are several important and unique issues that must be considered for anyone who has recently lost their spouse or ex-spouse, before filing a claim to collect Social Security benefits.


This flowchart addresses many common Social Security issues that arise for individuals who have recently lost their spouse or ex-spouse, including:


  • Eligibility and age considerations
  • Length of marriage rules
  • Age that benefits can be collected by the survivor
  • Surviving spouse vs. surviving ex-spouse implications
  • Impact of a remarriage
  • Impact of having children
  • Impact of a disability

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