Spousal-Only Beneficiaries in 2050Released: March 2015
Next expected update: 2018
DEFINITION: Spousal-only beneficiaries are individuals who did not work at all or enough to qualify for Social Security retirement benefits on their own earnings records, but do qualify for one-half of their spouses' monthly benefit.
In 2050, we project that:
- Just over one percent of all beneficiaries aged 62 or older will be spousal only and more than three-fourths of spousal-only beneficiaries aged 62 or older will be women.
- The poverty rate will be higher for spousal-only beneficiaries compared with all beneficiaries aged 62 or older.
- Spousal-only beneficiaries will be disproportionately in low-earning households.
- Spousal-only beneficiaries will earn some credits by 2050, but not enough to qualify for benefits on their own records.a