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Death Before Retirement

​Priority of Ben​​eficiari​​​es

The Plan provides a benefit if you die before your pension begins. A death benefit is paid to your:

  • spouse/pension partner, or
  • dependent minor children if you have no spouse/pension partner, or
  • named beneficiary(ies) if you have no spouse/pension partner and no dependent minor children; otherwise
  • your estate.

Before Entitled to Pe​​ns​​ion

If you die before you have enough pensionable service to be eligible for a pension, your beneficiary (as determined by the priority list above) will receive your contributions with interest, plus the value of any actuarial purchase of pensionable service.​

After Entitled to Pe​​​​​nsion

If you die after you have enough pensionable service to be eligible for a pension, your surviving spouse/pension partner will receive a pension equal to the amount he or she would have received if you had elected a Joint Equal pension option with 100% continuing to your spouse/pension partner for life (reduced if necessary to comply with tax rule maximums). This pension is paid from the first of the month following:

  • your death, if your death occurs under contract or within two months of terminating your contract,
  • the date that would have been your 55th birthday if you die while not under contract and after two months of terminating your contract, or
  • the date that would have been the first eligible date of your pension, if you die after age 55 while not under contract.

If you have no spouse/pension partner but you have dependent minor children (under 18 years of age and dependent on you for support on the date of your death), your dependent minor children will receive:

  • double your contributions with interest, plus
  • the value of any actuarial purchases of pensionable service.

If you have no spouse/pension partner nor dependent minor children, your designated beneficiary (or your estate if no named beneficiaries exist or none are living) will receive:

  • your contributions with interest, plus
  • the value of any actuarial purchases of pensionable service.

Plan Provisions: If You Die After Your ​Pension Has​ Started

If you die after your pension has started, the death benefit will be determined by the pension option you elected at retirement. Refer to the Steps to Retirement publication for more information.

© Copyright 2015, Alberta Teachers' Retirement Fund Board
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