Divorce and Remarriage Article


Marital Status and your Finances

Seniors own the bulk of the state’s wealth in savings, home equity and other property. At this point in your life, you may have more at stake when you change your marital status. Or, you may be a widow living on Social Security income alone. If you choose to remarry, be aware of your decision’s potential impact on your finances.

If I get divorced, can I still get Social Security benefits on my husband’s work record?

Yes, if your ex-husband is receiving benefits or is deceased, so long as you were married to him for at least 10 years, and so long as you remain single. If your ex-husband is 62 years old or older and has not applied for benefits, you can still receive benefits on his record as long as you are at least 62 as well. You must, however, be divorced and single for at least two years before seeking such benefits. Your Social Security benefit amount will be the higher of (a) the benefit based on your work record, if any; or (b) one-half of the amount of your ex-husband’s benefit.

Will I continue to receive Social Security benefits as a widow (or widower) if I remarry?

Yes, if you are at least 60 years old when you remarry. (A widow or widower isn’t actually eligible for benefits until age 60 or, if disabled, until age 50.) Or you could apply to receive benefits based on your new spouse’s work record instead if those benefits would be higher. If you remarry before turning 60, however, you will be ineligible for widow’s benefits throughout your marriage. 

For more information, visit Social Security on-line or by phone at (800) 772-1213.

Do I need to change my will in order to remove my ex-spouse as a beneficiary?

Unless your will states otherwise, your divorce automatically revokes any provisions naming your ex-spouse as a beneficiary or as an executor, trustee, conservator or guardian. (ARS §14-2804) You do have to change the beneficiary designations for your life insurance and individual retirement accounts after divorce.

Is it true that I will pay higher taxes if I remarry?

About 40% of married people do pay higher taxes than those who are single with the same tax circumstances. About 50% will pay less, and the rest about the same amount of taxes.

The possibility of a penalty for filing jointly increases above the 25% tax bracket, but overall, the “marriage penalty” tax is not as universal as once believed. You should have your specific tax circumstances analyzed by a tax professional in preparation for remarrying.

Comments:

QUESTIONS

  • I have not seen my husband for 30 years. We have not been together since 1987. I am in the process of receiving my retirement benefits, I do not want him to receive any of my benefits or be listed as my dependent/spouse on my pension since I have never been with or seen him in 30 years. Please tell me how I should proceed in getting divorce/legal separation?? abandoned ex-wife
  • Am I responsible for debt incurred prior to marriage at anytime?
  • I have been separated from my wife for 17 years. I need to get a divorce is there any help i can get paying for this? I also need to know where to go to get documents started. thank you
  • My wife wants a divorce. Mainly to get my name and responsibility off of her. Is there a quick way to do this?
  • CAN MY EX-WIFE GARNISH MY SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY PAYMENTS FOR SPOUSAL SUPPORT? SHE WORKS AND I AM UNABLE TO. OUR MARRIAGE LASTED 7 MONTHS
  • where can i get free or very low help in filling out a qualified domestic relations order (qdro)
  • Is there a time limit between filing a legal seperation and filing a divorce?
  • We have been married for 23 years. My husbands last surviving parent recently passed away leaving my husband some property and money. If I file for divorce is that inheritance considered community property?
  • Me and my girlfriend are asian. Currently I am working in US by holding my non immigrant visa and she is staying in Asia. We are planning to get marry soon. Is it possible I sign a marriage certificate in US then courier to her to sign for her part? She needs to apply her Visa as my supplement with the legal Marriage Certificate before she can legally stay with me in US.
  • I recently read the legal eagle by atty mark Sullivan, its for military and spouse, family divorces. He says to see a military legal assistance atty.could you locate one close to Yavapai county?

STORIES

  • I just helped my mother, age 89, deal with her Medicare HMO. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • If you get a divorce, make sure your date of birth is on the Decree if your name is changing!. . .

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  • State Bar of Arizona
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    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
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    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
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