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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

Stop, Look & Listen: Railroad Retirement Benefits Q&A

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Impact of Divorce on Spouse Benefit

(Posted April 20, 2009)

Question 702: I will be 66 in February 2010. If I divorce my husband, will I still get Tier 1 & 2?

Answer: If you are divorced, you will lose Tier 2 of your Spouse benefit.
But you can receive a specific portion of your husband's Tier 2 if you and your husband agree to it as part of the property settlement.

If your marriage has lasted at least 10 years, you will be eligible for a Divorced Spouse Benefit. Unlike the Tier 1 of a Spouse benefit, Tier 1 will be recomputed under the regular Social Security formula, and it may be less than it is now.

You can ask the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) for an estimate of what you will receive following your divorce. You should notify the RRB as soon as your divorce becomes final to avoid any operpayment of benefits.

Important notice:

Answers are provided as general guidance on the subjects covered in the question and are not provided as legal advice to the questioner or to readers. Any legal issues should be reviewed by your legal counsel to apply the law to the particular facts of this and similar situations.

The law in this area changes frequently. Answers are believed to be correct as of the posting dates shown. The completeness or accuracy of a particular answer may be affected by changes in the law (statutes, regulations, rulings, court decisions, etc.) that occur after the date on which a particular Q&A is posted.

Copyright 1997-2017 Robert S. Kaufman
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