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How Will Marriage Affect My Social Security Disability Benefits?

Last week, we wrote a blog post answering a question that was sent to us through Facebook. We received some great feedback and readers have suggested that they’d like us to make this a regular thing. Please feel free to let us know your thoughts in the comment section below. Tell us what questions you’d like us to answer next week! Today’s question is:

Question: How will marriage affect my disability benefits?

Getting married may affect your disability benefits in a variety of ways. This is largely dependent on what type of benefits you receive—Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

If you receive SSI benefits, you likely already know that eligibility is determined based on your income and financial resources. Once you get married, the SSA will “deem” a portion of your spouse’s income to your record. Essentially, this means that they will consider your future husband or wife’s income to be your income as well. This may significantly reduce your monthly payment or even cause the SSA to terminate your benefits altogether.

It is important to note that, if you live with your significant other but are not yet married, the SSA may still decide to deem some of your partner’s income to your record. Currently, the SSA does not deem between same-sex couples even if they are married, registered domestic partners, or have a civil union license.

Learn more about spousal deeming and how it will affect your SSI benefits, here: Spousal Deeming.

If you receive SSDI on your own earnings record, getting married will have no impact on your benefits—no matter how much money your future spouse earns. If you receive SSDI based on someone else’s earnings record, your benefits could be affected in the following ways:

  • If you receive SSDI benefits under an eligible parent’s record, getting married will cause your benefits to be terminated. The only time benefits will not be terminated in this circumstance is if you are marrying another disabled adult child.
  • If you are currently receiving SSDI benefits on the work record of an ex-spouse, your benefits will be terminated if you remarry. This also applies to individuals who receive SSDI on the record of a deceased ex-spouse who remarry before age 50 if disabled, and before age 60 if not disabled.

Before you make any decisions regarding marriage or disability benefits, you should always consult with an SSA representative. That way, you can avoid unknowingly compromising your benefits. Please feel free to leave additional questions or comments in the section below and we will try our best to answer each of your questions.

Submitted By: Molly Clarke

Comments

A longtime friend of mine (30 plus years) died 3.July 2013. Three weeks before he passed he married a 27 year old,who he has been with on and off for 2 years. I think she coerced him into marriage and he was on strong pain medication. He was not very coherent the last 4 weeks of his life. The wife got pregnant by another man,while with my friend,she is also on meth and HIS pills and has lost custody of her 2 children due to the meth use. My friend applied for SSDI while he was ill,at this point I don't think he had gotten any approval/denial. His wife of 3 weeks (married on 8.June) now is claiming herself,her 9 year old and the baby who is now 6mths. old. She claims the baby is my friends,even though he had a Vasectomy 9 years ago. CPS has removed the children the day (12/26/2012) the baby was born due to her Meth addiction. They are still in Foster care. How can I turn her in for fraud,for claiming a child that is not my friends?

Your friends wife can claim SSI on her child she conceived while with him even though it is not is child. As long as they were married when the child was conceived she has rights to collect under there then husband.The same thing happened to a friend of mine. That's just how it is.

I'm a disabled custodial parent. My x husband has been approved for ssdi. He has a court order for child support and we just had the support re-evaluated for income adjustment. My question is, I WA told I was responsible for filling auxiliary benefits for our children. And if they were approved then his auxiliary payment would count as child support BUT I was also told that our children can not receive payments from both patents. Which equals no payments. The courts lowered his support, gave me thirty says to fill on behalf of our children, but in the mean time ordered child support. What can I expect from the ss administers and what benefits or child support can I expect to receive. I was also granted alimony for life, am I entitled to any payments from ss or payments from his check.

I am someone that collects Disabled child benefits under my dads name. I am currently in my last e 20's and am engaged to get married late this year. My question is when i get married I would think the numeric value of my benefits to demenish or possibly deplete but when I go apply for SSI Disability does the amount of my spouse income determine how much I receive in benefits?