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Maximum benefits?

Is there any kind of family maximum that applies to the total benefits that a couple can receive on their separate records?

I understand the basics of the family maximum as it applies to benefits on ONE earnings record.

But if two single people with benefits on their own separate records marry, is their any interaction between their benefits?

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To answer your question, yes, there is an interaction between spousal benefits, in some cases.

In one case, this can work to your advantage. For example, consider a homemaker who worked years on a part-time basis. In this case, the homemaker likely can get a greater spousal benefit as opposed to the benefit bases solely on his/her work record. Here the worker's benefit "positively interacts" with the homemaker's benefit.

However, if a spouse receives a pension based on work where he/she did not pay Social Security taxes (ex. government worker), the other spouse's benefit may be reduced.

Please seek personalized guidance on this as this can be complex.

http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10035.html


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