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Disabled worker remarriage (Spouse's benefits question)

My boyfriend (age 61) and I (age 45) have been together for 12 years. We are not married. He is receiving Disability since age 36 due to a stroke. We have a child (aged 3) together and she receives benefits under his disability (equivalent to 50% of what he gets). If we were to marry, would I be eligible for Spouse's benefits and if so, how much? Would there be any disadvantages to us being legally married? (He was married previously, for over 10 years, although I believe he may not still have been married when he started to receive disability benefits - I do know his children at the time received them)

Thank you

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Yes, this may be possible. There is a spousal benefit for spouses who care for an infant. However, your gain may turn into a loss of the child's benefit. You'll want to discuss directly with Social Security before deciding, but see the following excerpt on this :

Benefits are payable to the spouse of a disabled worker :

  • at age 62 or older, unless he or she collects a higher Social Security benefit based on his or her earnings record. The spouse benefit amount will be permanently reduced by a percentage based on the number of months up to his or her full retirement age.
  • at any age if he or she is caring for your child under age 16 or disabled and receiving Social Security benefits.

    Your spouse would receive these benefits until the child reaches age 16. At that time, the child's benefits continue, but your spouse's benefits stop unless he or she is old enough to receive retirement benefits (age 62 or older) or survivor benefits as a widow or widower (age 60).

http://www.ssa.gov/dibplan/dfamily2.htm

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Not affiliated with the US Social Security Administration