Death Benefits Before Retirement
If you are unmarried and still in covered employment
- If you are vested, you are unmarried, and you die while working in covered employment (or you are considered totally disabled or on a layoff of 24 months or less), your designated beneficiary(ies) will receive a pre-retirement death-in-service benefit. This benefit will be payable for 10 years or until your last beneficiary dies, whichever occurs first.
- The amount of the pre-retirement death-in-service benefit will equal 50% of the pension benefit you accrued as of your date of death. It will be calculated as if you retired on a Normal Retirement Pension under the Straight Life Pension form on the first day of the month in which you die.
If you are married and still in covered employment
If you are married, you are vested, and you die while in covered employment (or you are on total disability or you are on layoff for up to 24 months), your spouse will receive 50% of your monthly benefit calculated as a Straight Life Pension. There is no benefit reduction based on your age.
If you are married and left covered employment
- If you are married and you left covered employment at or after age 55, the benefit will be 50% of the Early Retirement Pension you would have received if you had retired on the first day of the month in which you died, reduced for the 50% Husband and Wife Pension.
- If you are married and you left covered employment before age 55, the benefit will be 50% of your deferred Vested Pension, reduced for the Early Vested Pension and the Husband and Wife Pension. Your surviving spouse cannot begin to receive benefits until you would have turned age 55.
What you need to do
If you are unmarried, you must designate your beneficiary for the pre-retirement death-in-service benefit. NOTE: If you do not designate a beneficiary (or beneficiaries) for this benefit, your benefit may be paid to a default beneficiary, according to Plan rules. So, it’s very important to always have a designated beneficiary on file. You may change your designated beneficiary(ies) any time.