A deported person is unlikely to access Social Security benefits. However, if your husband or wife is the one who has been deported, and you are qualified to get these benefits, you will receive your share. On the other hand, if you wanted to receive your deported spouse’s benefits, you could be eligible. However, it may take a long time. And in the end, you may not receive the benefits at all.
Who Can Collect Social Security Benefits?
U.S. citizens can collect Social Security benefits if they meet the set working requirements. For non-citizens, it’s possible to collect these benefits too. However, they must meet the set working requirements and have the proper immigration status.
In the case of non-citizens, they can either be permanent residents or non-citizens who have the authorization to work in the U.S. and obtain Social Security cards. And the permission is only given by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Neither immigrants nor citizens could claim Social Security benefits if they did not pay the associated taxes.
Below are the requirements for people to access Social Security, spousal or survivorship benefits:
- One must be a U.S. citizen or legal immigrant with a valid Social Security number.
- Those without any disability must have a minimum of at least 40 work credits amassed over at least 10 years. Their work earnings will partly determine how fast they can get these credits.
- People with disabilities must have at least six work credits to claim benefits if they are blind. However, they may also be expected to have earned at least one work credit per year for each year they worked from 21 years until they became disabled or attained 62 years.
- Those with a disability other than blindness should have earned at least 20 work credits over a 10-year period, which ends in the year they became disabled. However, different rules apply to younger workers. So, everyone should ensure they pay close attention to the special rules.
- All claimants must be at least 62 years old.
- If you are a spouse, ex-spouse, child, parent or widow of someone qualified to get Social Security benefits, you could also collect the benefits. But you must also meet additional eligibility criteria.
Can You Collect Benefits if Your Spouse has Been Deported?
If you want to claim Social Security and deportation occurs, you could still collect benefits. If you are qualified, you can claim your share of Social Security benefits. However, the issue becomes complicated if your spouse is deported and you hope to receive his benefits.
Can a Deported Person Collect Social Security Benefits?
If I get deported, what happens to my Social Security benefits? It's a good question if you or your spouse's immigration status is uncertain. Since a deported person is no longer a legal immigrant, that person cannot collect Social Security benefits. However, deported people admitted back into the country again as permanent residents can claim their benefits if they meet the qualifications.
Unfortunately, it may take anywhere from three to 10 years for a deportee to return. And that is a long time to wait. You could earn your own Social Security benefits during that time.
Can You Claim Your Deported Husband’s Social Security Benefits?
If your husband has been deported, you can collect some of his Social Security benefits if:
- You are a U.S. Citizen.
- You were in the U.S. for the entire month during which your husband was deported.
However, in this case, your husband must have qualified for Social Security benefits, and you must also meet the threshold for spousal support.
Planning for Retirement
Usually, deportation and benefits don’t go together. So, planning your retirement based on your spouse’s potential Social Security benefits is a bad idea if his immigration status is uncertain. If your husband gets deported, he is unlikely to receive his benefits. And if you do not meet the strict requirements concerning the time of deportation, you won’t get his benefits either.
It would be wise for you to try to earn your own Social Security benefits instead. It may take you longer than you want to, but the benefits are guaranteed afterward. Alternatively, you can invest in your future by funding an individual retirement account (IRA).
- SSA: Social Security Numbers for Noncitizens
- SSA: Understanding Supplemental Security Income Social Security Entitlement -- 2021 Edition
- AARP: How do survivor benefits work?
- SSA: Old Age and Survivor's Insurance
- AllLaw: Your Options If Your Spouse Is Deported (Removed) From the U.S.
- Customsmobile: § 404.464 - How does deportation or removal from the United States affect the receipt of benefits?
I hold a BS in Computer Science and have been a freelance writer since 2011. When I am not writing, I enjoy reading, watching cooking and lifestyle shows, and fantasizing about world travels.