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Beneficiary - Death of Disability Retiree


Guest Jami
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A retiree receiving a disability pension under a governmental defined benefit plan died with a balance. This person was divorced and had designated a parent as a beneficiary in writing. The plan does not specifically discuss the designation of a beneficary by a disability retiree but the practice has been for beneficiaries to be named by disability retirees and balances remaining have been paid to the designated beneficiary. My question is whether the balance should be paid to the estate or to the named beneficiary.

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Seems surprising that the plan would treat a disability retiree differently. If the Plan does not answer the question, probably advisable to look first for a precedent, and second to treat this person just like any other retiree.

Any other thoughts?

I'm a retirement actuary. Nothing about my comments is intended or should be construed as investment, tax, legal or accounting advice. Occasionally, but not all the time, it might be reasonable to interpret my comments as actuarial or consulting advice.

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You'd need to look at the plan document (which may consist of a statute, rules, and/or some other document(s)), and applicable state and local law. However, in most instances, a plan has a procedure for naming a beneficiary other than the estate. If this plan does, and if the procedure was followed, the money would go to the named beneficiary.

Employee benefits legal resource site

The opinions of my postings are my own and do not necessarily represent my law firm's position, strategies, or opinions. The contents of my postings are offered for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. A visit to this board or an exchange of information through this board does not create an attorney-client relationship. You should consult directly with an attorney for individual advice regarding your particular situation. I am not your lawyer under any circumstances.

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