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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

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

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Railroad Spouse With Larger Social Security Benefit

(Posted November 12, 2011)

Question 839: I understand from RRB that I can collect a spouse benefit from my retired husband's railroad benefit when I am 62. Can I then collect my own much larger Social Security benefit from my own non-railroad work at my full retirement age of 66 (instead of the Railroad Retirement spouse benefit)?

Answer: Railroad Retirement benefits generally consist of two components, Tier 1 and Tier 2. Only Tier 1 is reduced for Social Security. So you can receive your Tier 2 even if your Tier 1 is eliminated because of a larger Social Security benefit.


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.


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