The Effect of Racial Disparities on Entitlement to Social Security Survivor Benefit and Widow Poverty

When Social Security survivor benefits exceed a surviving spouse’s own retired-worker benefits, it helps keep many surviving spouses out of poverty. Yet, access to survivor benefits differs by race by virtue of differences in marital histories, as well as in…

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Social Security Household Benefits: Measuring Program Knowledge

Social Security offers two types of benefits for spouses: spousal and survivor benefits. Regardless of his or her own work history, a married individual can claim spousal Social Security benefits, which are equal to half of his or her spouse’s…

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Exploring the Social Security Benefit Implications of Same-Sex Marriage

Same-sex marriage became legal nationwide in the United States on June 26, 2015. Federal legalization of same-sex marriage expands the pool of individuals potentially eligible for spousal Social Security benefits to the estimated 4 percent of the population that is…

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Exploring the Social Security Benefit Implications of Same-Sex Marriage

Same-sex marriage became legal nationwide in the United States on June 26, 2015. Federal legalization of same-sex marriage expands the pool of individuals potentially eligible for spousal Social Security benefits to the estimated 4 percent of the population that is…

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Marriage-related Policies in an Estimated Life-cycle Model of Households’ Labor Supply and Savings for Two Cohorts

In the United States, both taxes and old age Social Security benefits explicitly depend on one's marital status. We study the effects of eliminating these marriage-related provisions on the labor supply and savings of two different cohorts. To do so,…

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