Social Security Q&A: Can My Wife Qualify for Benefits on My Record?

Social Security Q&A: Can My Wife Qualify for Benefits on My Record?

Question: My wife didn’t work enough to earn 40 credits to qualify for Social Security retirement benefits. Can she qualify on my record?

Answer: Even if your spouse has never worked under Social Security, she can, at full retirement age, receive a benefit equal to one-half of your full retirement amount.

Your wife is eligible for reduced spouse’s benefits as early as age 62, as long as you are already receiving benefits. For more information, visit

Q: Do I have to give my Social Security number when I’m asked?

A: Giving your Social Security number is voluntary. If requested, you should ask why the person asking needs your number, how it will be used, what law requires you to give your number and what the consequences are if you refuse. The answers to these questions can help you decide, but the decision is yours. Keep in mind that requestors might not provide you their services if you refuse to provide your Social Security number. For more information, visit or read the publication “Your Social Security Number And Card.”

This column was prepared by the Social Security Administration. Visit

Author: Tribune News Service

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