Just last week the US Supreme Court overturned the Federal Defense of Marriage Act which means Social Security benefits have now been extended to same-sex couples. But qualifying for these benefits can get kind of muddy.
Economics professor and Social Security expert Laurence Kotlikoff sheds some light: “You only have to be married one year to get spousal benefits and nine months to get survivor benefits. Moreover, if your partner has a child below age 16, you can collect spousal benefits regardless of your age.”
What we do now is that the SS benefits will be extended to couples that live in the states where same-sex marriage is legal, save for Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey and Colorado who recognize same-sex unions but don’t sanction it.
An After DOMA report states, “Those state laws will likely pose obstacles for legally married couples and surviving spouses in accessing federal protections and responsibilities. If you meet all of the qualifications for a benefit, you can apply for Social Security benefits now to preserve the start date for your benefits based on the date of your application.”
Read more over at Money Retirement.
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