How will my retirement decisions affect my spouse?

What the impact of your retirement on your spouse depends on many factors.  Some of the factors to evaluate are:

  • Does your spouse have their own employer sponsored pension?
  • Is your spouse eligible or in receipt of federal Social Security Retirement Benefits? Federal Social Security Disability Benefits?
  • Is your spouse eligible or will be eligible for Medicare based on their own employment history?

The answer to each of these questions will lead you into a different direction.

For example:  Your spouse is also a public service retire with a MainePERS pension, eligible for employer sponsored Medicare Advantage program and are not eligible for federal Social Security benefits, your retirement will have little financial impact on your spouse.

Another example:  Your spouse has had very little employment history, a very small federal Social Security benefit (under $100 per month), and is not, on their own, eligible for Medicare.  Their eligibility for Medicare is tied to your work history and their financial security is based on your MainePERS pension.

In a case such as above, choosing a MainePERS pension option which distributes a larger portion to your spouse on your passing may be a valid option.  Evaluating the cost of dependent care through your employer’s Medicare Advantage program may be necessary to determine is the cost is doable with your pension benefit.

Each situation has to be individually evaluated depending of your circumstance. There is NO one answer.