Social Security and Divorced Women

Social Security and Divorced Women

Core Facts

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Although the U.S. Census has found that divorce rates have dropped since 1996, there is still over one third of women who divorce before age 24. That number drops significantly for older age groups, falling to 8.5% for women in the 30-34 year old age bracket. 

Unfortunately, the “if at first you don’t succeed” rule doesn’t apply here. While about 40% of first marriages end in divorce, that percentage climbs exponentially for second, and third timers, with 73% of third marriages ending in a split. 

For divorced women nearing retirement, however, time is ticking away, and financial readiness is an essential factor to consider. The good news is that although Social Security can be a rather complex matter, divorced women are eligible for a benefit that equals one-half of their ex-spouse’s full retirement amount, as long as they start receiving benefits at their full retirement age. 

A divorced person is entitled to benefits based on his or her ex-spouse’s employment when the ex is eligible for Social Security retirement or disability benefits; the marriage lasted for 10 years or longer; the divorced person remains unmarried; the divorced person is a least 62; and the benefit to which the divorced person is entitled based on his or her own wages is less than the benefit that he or she would receive based on the ex’s. 

Divorce can certainly exert a fair amount of stress on a person, and preparing for retirement comes with its own fair share of stressful, sleepless nights. But this piece of information, and other helpful tips from the Social Security Administration’s website, “Information for Financial Planners,” together with sound financial strategy from your advisor, can certainly help ease the stress. 



Material contained in this article is provided for information purposes only and is not intended to be used in connection with the evaluation of any investments offered by David Lerner Associates, Inc. This material does not constitute an offer or recommendation to buy or sell securities and should not be considered in connection with the purchase or sale of securities.

To the extent that this material concerns tax matters, it is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by a taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed by law. Each taxpayer should seek independent advice from a tax professional based on his or her individual circumstances.

These materials are provided for general information and educational purposes based upon publicly available information from sources believed to be reliable-- we cannot assure the accuracy or completeness of these materials. The information in these materials may change at any time and without notice.

David Lerner Associates does not provide tax or legal advice. The information presented here is not specific to any individual's personal circumstances. Member FINRA & SIPC



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Founded in 1976, David Lerner Associates is a privately-held broker/dealer with headquarters in Syosset, New York and branch offices in Westport, CT; Boca Raton, FL; Teaneck and Princeton, NJ; and White Plains, NY. For more information contact David Lerner Associates Call 516-921-4200 Visit our website:

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Jake Mendlinger
Account Manager
516.829.8374 X 232

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