How Marriage Impacts Public Benefits

When someone who uses public benefits gets married, their benefits may change or stop altogether depending on their age or the type of benefits they use. Social Security, Disability, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Old-Age Pension and Medicaid for Long-Term Care are all public benefits that may change. Willoughby law firm specializes in all areas of amicable divorce in Colorado, estate administration and prenuptial agreements, so for guidance on how your benefits may be affected by these areas, our expert attorneys are here to help. Here is some further information about how marriage can specifically impact Social Security and Disability benefits:


Social Security

Many people receive Social Security retirement benefits as the spouse of a qualified

worker. That is because an individual who does not have a sufficient work history to receive Social Security benefits may be entitled to benefits on the work record of the spouse who does. In order to receive benefits as a spouse, the recipient must have a valid marriage to the qualified worker, through either a traditional marriage or by common law marriage. The spouse of a retired or deceased worker is eligible for benefits. Under certain circumstances, a divorced spouse is also eligible. In general, to receive benefits as a widow or former spouse, a person must be unmarried. Remarrying may cause benefits to stop, under certain circumstances. Contact your local Social Security office for information.


When a worker becomes disabled, his or her spouse may be eligible for benefits

under certain circumstances. While the spouse of a disabled worker is entitled to benefits in these situations, there are no equivalent benefits for the disabled spouse of the worker because the spouse is disabled” (Willoughby, 2016, p. 154).


For more information on how attorneys can help navigate benefit changes that happen upon marriage, read  “Chapter 13: Family Relationships” in 2016 Colorado Senior Law Handbook, or give your trusted Colorado lawyer a call.


Willoughby, K. R. Esq., (2016). Chapter 13: Family Relationships. 2016 Colorado Senior Law

Handbook, 154-155.

Categories: Exceptional Representation