Claiming benefits under Social Security can be tricky, especially for married couples. In some cases, decisions you make can lead you to get more money than you'd expect.

In the following video from our Social Security Q&A series, Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool's director of investment planning, answers a question from Fool reader Robert, who asks whether his spouse can later get higher survivors' benefits after his death even if his spouse takes spousal benefits based on his work history at age 62. Dan confirms Robert's suspicion that his spouse will get less than the normal half of her spousal benefits because she's taking them early, but if she doesn't take survivors' benefits until full retirement age, she won't get penalized on those benefits. Dan concludes that essentially, survivors' benefits let your spouse restart the clock even after taking early benefits earlier in life.

Have general questions about Social Security? Email them to, and they might be the subject of a future video!

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