Survivor benefits and Social Security


Q: I am a 62-year-old federal employee, about to retire under CSRS after 35 years of employment. My husband is 65 and has worked in the private sector for 40 years. He is receiving a monthly Social Security payment. If I elect a survivor benefit for him, would his Social Security benefit be reduced because of the survivor benefit upon my death?

A: No, it would not be reduced. He’d be entitled to his earned Social Security benefit and the survivor annuity you elected for him, without a reduction in either.


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Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to

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