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If I select Option 2 or 3 when I retire and name my spouse as beneficiary, what happens if my beneficiary dies or we divorce? May I change my option and/or my beneficiary?
Your retirement options cannot be changed after your retirement. If your beneficiary dies before you, your monthly retirement benefit "pops-up" (increases) to the equivalent of the Maximum retirement plan. In the case of a divorce the contract remains in force and your beneficiary (ex-spouse) will receive your monthly benefit after your death unless a Court, acting through a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, directs otherwise.
What about the $5,000 death benefit that will be paid at my death? Who is the beneficiary and can I change the beneficiary if necessary?
Statutes provide that the beneficiary(s) of a retired member will receive a $5,000 death benefit following the member's death. This applies regardless the retirement option you selected or how long you receive benefits. When more than one beneficiary is named, the $5,000 is divided equally among the surviving beneficiaries. You can change the beneficiary for the $5,000 death benefit at anytime.
How do I change my beneficiary designation?
Active members should obtain a Beneficiary Designation Form (D.3B). Click here to open a Beneficiary Designation Form or you can click on Active Clients menu, Benefit Forms then click on Beneficiary Designation link to open the form. It is very important to keep your beneficiary designation up to date. The Beneficiary Designation form provides for up to three primary beneficiaries and up to three contingent beneficiaries. It is not necessary to name six individual beneficiaries but you should name at least one primary and one contingent beneficiary. Your estate or a trust fund can be named as the beneficiary to your account. OTRS requests you provide a copy of your trust if named as a beneficiary. Retired and inactive members may also change their beneficiary designation by accessing the website address above. The form is found in Retired Clients under Has Your Information Changed. Just as with Active Clients, OTRS would like to remind you that it is very important to keep your beneficiary designation up to date.