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Does Getting Married Impact Your Social Security Disability Benefits? February 20, 2019

Downtown High Point, High Point
Does Getting Married Impact Your Social Security Disability Benefits?, High Point, North Carolina

Unlike other government programs, Social Security disability insurance is a system paid for by payroll contributions. Under Social Security disability law, eligibility is based primarily on your work history and ability to hold a full-time job, but there are some other situations that could affect your ability to collect benefits. For instance, your marital status is a factor in certain cases.

Social Security Disability & Marriage

Work History

To qualify for disability, most applicants will need at least 40 work credits, 20 of which were earned in the previous 10 years. However, spouses of eligible workers and their children may also qualify for benefits, which may continue even after the one who earned the credits has passed away. The most important factor determining whether marriage will affect your disability eligibility is whose work history the benefits are based on.

Benefits Based on Your Own Work History

social security disability lawIf your disability benefits are based on your own work history, getting married will have no impact on your eligibility. Even if they earn a higher-than-average income every month, your benefits won’t be reduced or eliminated.

Benefits Based on Family Members

Social Security disability law allows you to collect benefits if you’ve gotten divorced or your spouse has died and a medical impairment makes it impossible to work. Adult children who have suffered a disability from a young age may also qualify, although both groups will likely lose their benefits after getting married. To ensure you understand how marriage will impact your benefits, it’s best to contact a Social Security disability law attorney before taking your next step. This will give your claim a greater chance of success.


Social Security disability law is extremely complex, especially if you’ve never dealt with the system before. For over 60 years, the firm of Hill & Hovis has provided crucial guidance to disabled workers and their families throughout High Point, NC, helping to ensure everyone gets the benefits to which they’re entitled. Visit their website for more on their disability representation services or call (336) 883-6000 to speak with a member of their team and schedule a consultation.