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Social Security Question:
I am 63 1/2, working full time, but I absolutely despise my job and would like to quit if I could afford to live very frugall
Social Security Answer:
I am 63 1/2, working full time, but I absolutely despise my job and would like to quit if I could afford to live very frugally without my paycheck. I was divorced about 15 years ago after a 17 year marriage in which I worked almost none at all, while my husband had a high-paying job.
I never remarried and never will. My ex will be 62 this week, but as far as I know (we don't speak), he has no intention of retiring because his job is so prestigious and easy. If I retired now, I'm told that my benefits would be just under $1,000 per month. Could I apply for benefits from my ex's account if (1) I haven't reached FRA yet and (2) if he hasn't applied for benefits yet?
To complicate matters, the first half of his career was in private practice as an attorney, and I assume he contributed to SS, although he eventually became a partner and I think they had some different or separate type of retirement plan. Then he was appointed a judge and went with CALPERS. AT the time of the divorce, I was awarded only a tiny portion of his CASPERS pension, $1,936 per month, which I will receive indefinitely if I don't remarry.
This could increase a bit if the judges get raises, but the CA economy is in bad shape, so I'm not counting any chickens. What I can't find an answer to is whether the part of his pension I was awarded in the divorce will negatively affect the amount of Social Security benefits I can receive.
Also, if I do retire now and can get only my own benefits, at what point and under what circumstances could I switch to what I assume would be the higher amount from his benefits?
I hope this makes sense and thank you for your time.
Support Replied ~ 05-03-2012 15:36:23
That pension you get from your ex is quite a bit. If he worked under another retirement system, then his Social Security rate will be lower that if he didn't. Since his rate (Age 66) has to be double of what your age 66 rate is, there might be a problem....Call the toll free number and they will tell you if your exs' rate is double yours.
You can file anytime....You muist be divorced for at least 2 years to get spouses' benefits regardless of what he is doing. There is no offset to you since you are not the one that earned the pension from another retirement system.
Once you find out what the spouses benefit under Social Security would be, then you can better make a decision....At age 66 you can get a full 1/2 of his and let yours stay in until you are age 70....That might be worth it to you since you are getting the $1936.00 a month now....Write if you need more info.....Carol
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"Social Security Advisor" is intended to provide accurate and authoritative information with regard to the subject matter covered. It is offered with the understanding that neither the publisher nor the author is engaged in rendering legal, accounting, investment or other professional advice or services.
Information obtained from RetirementCommunity.com, including e-mail responses from "Social Security Advisor" should be considered as general educational information. You must never rely upon the advice given here. Your individual situation may not fit the generalizations discussed. Only your local Social Security office can evaluate your individual situation and give you advice.
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