Spouse's Social Security benefits


Q: My husband retired with a government pension based on work for which he did not pay Social Security taxes. If he should die before me, I will receive a monthly spousal annuity payment equal to 70 percent of his benefit. He was also eligible for Social Security benefits, and the amount was reduced because of his government pension. I have not worked long enough to receive a pension or Social Security benefits on my own record. Will I be entitled to Social Security benefits on my husband’s record? And how will those benefits be affected by the spousal annuity?

A: Yes, you would be able to receive a full Social Security survivor benefit based on your husband’s work record. The windfall elimination provision doesn’t apply to survivor benefits.


About Author

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

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