My condolences on your loss. Social Security is an insurance program for which workers (and their employers) pay premiums through payroll taxes. Where a decedent has worked in the national economy and earned at least 40 "covered quarters" there will be survivor benefits for a minor child, the amount of which will be calculated on the basis of the decedent's work record. If, when you reach retirement age you are not married your own Social Security retirement will be compared to any benefit available on your deceased wife's account, and you will receive the greater of the two.
Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.
This answer is offered as a public service for general information only and may not be relied upon as legal advice.
Your daughter is likely entitled to survivors benefits under your late wife's work record. Now being a widower, you would be entitled to disabled widower's benefits IF you were disabled (which it does not appear you are since you state that you are working)...so I think the best option here would simply be applying for benefits for the child. Lots of people believe that there are benefits for the spouse which there are but really only under limited circumstances. Based on these facts, I would be contemplating retirement at 62 or later and knowing that your daughter may be entitled to some survivors benefits assuming that your late wife had earned SSA credits from employment.
I am sorry for your loss.
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