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My wife and I are planning to retire at my age 62. I'll be 58 in a couple months; she's currently 57. Both of us qualify for social security but my benefit will be approximately 25% higher than hers.

Talking with the Social Security office about what benefits my wife would get if I died within the next few years, the representative implied that she could draw on her own social security until she determined it would be advantageous to draw on mine. For example, she could take her own reduced benefit at age 62, collect it until her age 70 and then switch to my benefit, collecting the same amount I would have gotten by waiting until age 70 to collect my own. In other words, she would collect something like 130% of my full benefit amount. Did I hear that right?

Also, what if we both take our benefits at age 62 and I die at age 70 or later. Can she switch to my benefit at the 130% of my full benefit amount once I am dead and she is past age 70? I know from my mother-in-laws case when she started drawing on her husbands SS at age 65, she got his "full" benefit (age 65 amount) amount in spite of the fact that he was collecting 130% of the full benefit amount, having worked to age 70 before collecting.

It would look like she can collect the maximum amount based on my social security, regardless of when I die (assuming I pre-decease her), by switching over to my benefit anytime after age 70 and relying on her own benefit until then. Have I got this all correct? Any real life examples out there?
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