Guidelines for Women and Social Security

Article excerpt

Byline: Mike Clark, Times-Union Reader Advocate

When Social Security began in 1935, Social Security benefits were limited to retired workers, and most workers were men. Most women did not work outside the home.

Now women in retirement age have ways to take advantage of this system. Here are suggestions from the Social Security Administration:

-- Married women may be eligible for a spouse's benefits. If you make your home and family your career, you have Social Security protection through your husband's work. You can receive benefits when he retires, becomes disabled or dies.

-- Women can receive benefits if they are caring for a child who is under age 16 or is disabled and entitled to benefits. If you don't have a child in your care, you must be age 62 or older to get benefits when your husband becomes disabled or retires.

-- If your husband dies, you can receive widow's benefits if you are age 60 or older. If you're disabled, you can get widow's benefits as early as age 50.

-- Make sure your Social Security record shows your correct name. This is especially important if you are employed, because your employer reports your earnings under the name you supply. …