The average benefits received at age 62 retirements fall into 75% of the indexed wages you earned during your work years. However, you could maximize your social security benefits by delaying receiving your SSDI claims well after you receive your retirement benefits.
Fortunately, if you are a divorcee or widower, caretaker of a dependent child, then you could claim almost 135% of the indexed salary amount of your spouse provided that he/she:
- Worked for 40 quarters of employment credit
- Retired at full age of retirement (65 if born before 1938, 66 if born from 1938 to 1954, and 67 if born after 1960)
- Paid social security taxes on his/her wages
- Has a disability themselves or a disabled spouse or dependent disabled child eligible in the Blue Book of disability set by the SSA (with some exceptions)
The eligible survivors would be paid more if they do not have any other retirement benefits available such as the spouse's own social security insurance or retirement benefits. Also, you would only be entitled to your spouse's SSDI even after qualifying the above criteria, if your marriage lasted at least 10 years. There is no exception to this rule. Also if you are the caretaker of your spouse's one or more children and they become disabled before age 22, you would be eligible to apply for your spouse's social security disability to cater to the economic needs regarding that child. You may also receive Medicaid or other social security benefits if your spouse or you don't qualify under SSDI.
You may contact our attorneys for direct consultation on your specific issue.