Inherited from spouse. Eligible beneficiaries of Tier I members must file to annuitize their death benefit by October 31 of the year following the year of the member's death; beneficiaries of Tier II members must file to annuitize their death benefit within 90 days from the date of the member's death. At the beginning, one must decide between the ORP defined contribution and the TRS defined benefit retirement plans. That said, like the guaranteed payments option, some very specific short-term financial considerations may make a lump sum the preferred choice. A career in one of the public Texas universities is bookended by two important  decisions. Why does it take so long to process a death benefit payment? If you are interested in learning what situations might warrant a lump-sum payment, please contact us. A more extreme version of the guaranteed payment option, a lump-sum payment allows one to “cash in” a portion of the annuity immediately. Certain circumstances might provide a monthly annuity less than $400 per month for an active member. Your Fund’s Pension Counselors are on hand to explain your options and help you make the choice that’s best for you. The trust must specifically men-tion TRS and contain a promise that the TRS survivor benefits will be used solely for the care and benefit of the dependent beneficiary. If the member was eligible for a service retirement at the time of death, or died within the first 30 days after retiring, the death benefit would be the greater of the amount indicated in the first paragraph above or a benefit based on the reserves that would have been payable under Option I Modified had the member retired on the day before he or she died. Can my Power of Attorney (PoA) agent change my beneficiary designations? What happens if you were to retire, only to get hit by a bus the next day? These include irrevocable designations made by the member (such as those made under a "continuing payment" option for the retirement allowance) and requirements specified in an instrument such as a domestic relations order. FAQ below. with these two exceptions: 1) The agent may not name himself or herself the beneficiary of your retirement benefits, or 2) designate or change your current beneficiary. TRS will be held harmless and free from any liability for making any payment or transfer to a person who would be otherwise entitled to such funds if not for the surviving spouse's exercise of a right of election. Your beneficiary (ies) may also be entitled to a Post-Retirement Death Benefit, and, if you were employed by New York State, a Survivor’s Benefit. Yes, 23 options! Agents can be granted the right to handle a broad range of personal, financial, legal, and other business affairs—including retirement benefits. As a beneficiary, may I invest the death benefit I receive in TRS' investment programs? You have six pension options. The initial benefit amount rises as this survivor percentage ratchets down. A member's beneficiary (or representative) must first submit a certified or original death certificate for the member; (s)he must also submit a Claimant's Statement (code DB17) . A death benefit, representing all or part of the member's retirement allowance under the Qualified Pension Plan (QPP), may be payable to a designated beneficiary or the member's estate; this would be based upon the payment option that the member chose at retirement. You may revoke your PoA at any time by sending us a signed, notarized statement. Generally, you must exercise a right of election within six months from the date of issuance of letters testamentary or of letters of administration, and generally must assert this right no later than two years after the date of the decedent's death. Your Pension Options and Beneficiary Choices. Looking at the annuity from this perspective, we generally avoid the guaranteed payout options, and we usually recommend the 100% joint life option where there is a beneficiary of similar age. The beneficiary (or other representative) applies for an accidental death benefit within two years of the member's death (except for beneficiaries of Tier IV and VI members, who must generally apply for an accidental death benefit within 60 days of the member's death). OR For more information, please see the Guide to Death Benefits for Beneficiaries of Retired Members or the Guide to Death Benefits for Beneficiaries of Non-Retired Members. Complete and submit a statutory short form PoA provided under the New York General Obligations Law. Only Option 1 allows beneficiary changes. Special circumstances concerning Option C: If you choose Option C and your beneficiary predeceases you, you cannot name a different Option C beneficiary. Option B, in which the amount of the annuity is slightly reduced, so that any remaining reserves after the beneficiary's death would be payable to a designated beneficiary or estate. For beneficiaries under the Tax-Deferred Annuity (TDA) Program, and beneficiaries of members who died while separated from service, TRS will generally send the Benefit Package four to six weeks after we have received a certified or original death certificate. It’s similar to the 100 Percent Beneficiary option in that provides 100 percent of your lifetime monthly allowance to one beneficiary after your death, but if your lifetime beneficiary predeceases you, your allowance increases to … How can a child claim a death benefit from TRS? (Option I Modified is a retirement payment option that provides a lump-sum benefit to the designated beneficiary based on the member's available pension reserves.). They are not subject to New York State and New York City taxes; however, beneficiaries residing in a state other than New York should check with their state tax agency about the tax consequences of these payments. Only one beneficiary may be named, and only a spouse, child, former spouse who has not remarried, mother, father, brother or sister is eligible for designation. Beneficiaries are not permitted to reinvest Qualified Pension Plan (QPP) death benefit funds with TRS. Of course, all circumstances are different. If this is not explicitly stated in the custody order, TRS requires separate documentation. Spouses of deceased members are permitted to roll over the taxable portion of a Qualified Pension Plan (QPP) and/or Tax-Deferred Annuity (TDA) Program death benefit to an eligible Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA) or other successor program. Beneficiaries It is critical that you designate at least one primary and one secondary beneficiary with TRS. Interestingly enough, many of the 23 available options are NEVER the best choice. The death benefit payment is issued approximately three months after TRS receives the correctly completed Claimant's Statement (code DB17) and other required documentation. A terminal illness or a short-term financial obligation would completely change the recommendations. Option B — 75 Percent to Beneficiary — Increase to Maximum Option Option B, a 75 percent joint and survivor benefit, provides a lifetime monthly payment to you. The amount you receive each month will vary depending on the option that you choose. The beneficiary's designated beneficiaries would not be able to establish an account with TRS and would have to make a lump-sum withdrawal of any TDA death benefit upon the original beneficiary's death. Processing a death benefit is a complex process. Because many of our newly retired clients are married to people of a similar age, we nearly always see better results from the joint life annuity option.