SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home1718. When Evidence of Termination of Prior Marriage is Required

1718.1 When do you need to provide evidence that your prior marriage ended?

You may be required to provide evidence that your marriage ended if your right to benefits depends on:

  1. The validity of a later marriage; or

  2. The termination of a prior marriage.

If you are claiming benefits as a divorced spouse (see §311), you must establish that the marriage lasted for at least 10 years before the divorce became effective.

1718.2 How does a marriage end?

A valid ceremonial or common-law marriage ends only by death, divorce, or annulment.

Last Revised: Mar. 12, 2009