Retirement and spouse Social Security


Q: I plan to retire this year. I am under CSRS. I understand the WEP for me but have some doubts about the Social Security benefits of my wife. She has been paying Social Security all her life and never worked for a government with another type of pension. Is her Social Security retirement affected because of me? If I choose a survivor benefit, how is that going to affect her Social Security?

A: The fact that you will receive a benefit from a retirement system where you didn’t pay Social Security taxes will have no affect on her own earned Social Security benefit or on the survivor benefit you elect for her.


About Author

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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