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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

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

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Can I Get Both A Widow's Railroad Retirement Benefit And My Own Social Security Benefit?

(Posted September 27, 2012)

Question 909: I am a widow drawing my husband's Railroad Retirement. I also worked and paid into Social Security for 40 years. Can I draw both Railroad Retirement from my husband and the Social Security that I paid into?

Answer: You can receive the full amount of your own Social Security. However, the Tier 1 of your Railroad Retirement Annuity will be reduced by your Social Security benefit.

So, before filing at Social Security you need to find out if your total monthly benefits increase with the addition of Social Security.

You need to contact both Railroad Retirement (toll-free: 877-772-5772) and Social Security (toll-free: 800-772-1213) to get the amounts and then compare the results.

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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