U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Oct 15, 2019

§ 216.51 - Who is eligible for a spouse annuity.

(a) To be eligible for an annuity, a spouse must:

(1) Be the husband or wife, as defined in part 222 of this chapter, of an employee who is entitled to an annuity described under subpart D of this part; and

(2) Stop working for any railroad employer.

(b) Where the employee's annuity began before January 1, 1975, the employee has completed less than 30 years of railroad service, and is age 65 or older, the spouse must be:

(1) Age 65 or older;

(2) Less than age 65 and have in his or her care a disabled child or minor child (a child under 18 years old if the spouse claimant is a wife, or under 16 years old if the spouse claimant is a husband) of the employee; or

(3) Age 62 or older but under age 65. In such case, all annuity components are reduced for each month the spouse is under age 65 at the time the annuity begins.

(c) Where the employee's annuity begins after December 31, 1974, the employee has completed 10 years but less than 30 years of railroad service, and has attained age 62, the spouse must be:

(1) Retirement age or older;

(2) Less than retirement age and have in his or her care a disabled child or a minor child (a child under 18 years old if the spouse claimant is a wife, or under 16 years old if the spouse claimant is a husband) of the employee; or

(3) Age 62 or older but under retirement age. In such case, all annuity components are reduced for each month the spouse is under retirement age at the time the annuity begins.

(d) Where the employee's annuity began after June 30, 1974, the employee has completed 30 years of railroad service, and is age 60 or older, the spouse must be:

(1) Age 60 or older;

(2) Less than age 60 and have in his or her care a disabled child or a minor child (a child under 18 years old if the spouse claimant is a wife, or under 16 years old if the spouse claimant is a husband) of the employee; or

(3) Age 60 but less than retirement age. In such case, the tier I component is reduced if the following conditions are met:

(i) The employee was under age 62 at the time his or her annuity began;

(ii) The employee annuity began after June 30, 1984;

(iii) The employee was under age 60 on June 30, 1984 or completed 30 years of railroad service after June 30, 1984; and

(iv) The spouse annuity begins after June 30, 1984.