Death Before Retirement

If a MEPP member has passed away, it is important to contact Member Services as soon as possible.

If you should pass away before you begin collecting your pension, MEPP will pay a benefit to either your pension partner or beneficiaries. This will depend on whether you were vested at the time of your death, and when your service in MEPP had been earned.

See the following for more information:

Post 1991 Service

Not Vested (Fewer Than Five Years of Service)

If you are not vested at the time you pass away, your pension partner will be entitled to a refund of your MEPP contributions with interest.

If you do not have a pension partner (or if your pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver), your chosen beneficiaries will be entitled to your MEPP contributions with interest.

If you have no beneficiary information on file, your MEPP contributions, plus interest, will be paid to the representative of your estate.

Vested (Five or More Years of Service)

If you are vested at the time you pass away, your pension partner will be entitled to a choice of a monthly lifetime pension, or a one-time lump-sum payment based on the commuted value of your pension.

  • The monthly pension payment will start immediately and continue even if your pension partner is working, re-marries or moves outside of Canada.
  • A commuted value (CV) lump sum paid to a pension partner is normally transferred to a Locked-In Retirement Account (LIRA). The total payout amount may also contain a portion of non-locked funds, which are paid as a taxable cash lump sum or else transferred to a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) at the pension partner’s choice.

LIRAs have strict rules about how and when the funds can be accessed. For further information on converting LIRA funds, visit the Government of Alberta Private Sector Pensions page.

If you do not have a pension partner (or if your pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver), your chosen beneficiaries will be entitled to a one-time lump-sum payment based on the commuted value of your pension. They will be sent a cheque with the appropriate amount of income tax withheld.

If you do not have a beneficiary on file with MEPP, the lump-sum payment based on the commuted value of your benefit will be paid to the personal representative of your estate. Tax rules do not allow for a transfer to a LIRA for a beneficiary other than a spouse or former spouse.

 

Relationship Benefit
Pension partner may choose either (a) or (b) unless a pre-retirement death waiver was completed (i.e a beneficiary is named): (a) Pension for life plus any excess contributions on post-1991 service.

(b) Commuted value of the benefit plus any excess contributions on post-1991 service.
Beneficiaries or estate (i.e. in cases of no existing pension partner or where they have waived their right to the benefit): Commuted value of the benefit plus any excess contributions on post-1991 service.

Pre-1992 Service

Not Vested (Fewer Than Five Years of Service) and Were Contributing to the Plan

If you are contributing as a non-vested member at the time you pass away, your pension partner will be entitled to a refund of double your regular MEPP contributions and interest, plus a refund of any buyback contributions and interest.

If you do not have a pension partner (or if any pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver), any dependent minor children beneficiaries will be entitled to the same benefits.

Other beneficiaries will be entitled to a refund of your regular contributions and interest.

If no beneficiary information is provided to us, the benefit will be paid to your estate.

 

Relationship Benefit
Pension partner (or any dependent minor children beneficiaries, where there is no surviving pension partner, or if the pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver): Refund of double your regular contributions and interest, plus refund of buyback contributions with interest.
Beneficiaries other than pension partner or eligible dependent minor child(ren): Refund of your contributions with interest.

Not Vested and Not Contributing to the Plan

If you are not vested and not contributing to the Plan at the time you pass away, your pension partner will be entitled to a refund of your MEPP contributions with interest.

If you do not have a pension partner (or if your pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver), your chosen beneficiaries will be entitled to your MEPP contributions with interest.

If you do not have a beneficiary on file with MEPP, the benefit will be paid to the personal representative of your estate.

Vested (Five or More Years of Service)

Your pension partner will be entitled to a monthly lifetime pension or a refund of double your contributions plus any buyback contributions, with interest.

The monthly pension will continue even if your pension partner is working, re-marries or moves outside of Canada.

If you do not have a pension partner (or if your pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver), any beneficiaries who are dependent minor children, will be entitled to a refund of double your contributions plus buyback contributions, with interest. Any other beneficiaries will be entitled to a refund of your contributions, with interest.

If you do not have a beneficiary on file with MEPP, the benefit will be paid to your estate.

 

Relationship Benefit
Pension Partner may choose either (a) or (b) unless a pre-retirement death waiver was completed (a) Pension for life.
or
(b) Refund of double your contributions with interest, plus refund of all buyback contributions and interest.
Dependent minor child beneficiaries, where there is no surviving pension partner, or if the pension partner has completed a pre-retirement death waiver Refund of double your contributions with interest, plus refund of all buyback contributions and interest.
Beneficiary (other than Pension Partner or eligible dependent minor children) or estate Refund of your contributions with interest.

Beneficiary Information

Any death benefits payable to beneficiaries after your death will be made according to the most recent information. In order to ensure your wishes are honoured, it is important to keep your information and your beneficiary information current at all times.

You can review your beneficiary information on your annual Pension Highlights or online at mypensionplan.ca.

If you would like to make changes to your beneficiaries, you can do so electronically on mypensionplan.ca or by completing the Designation of Beneficiary(ies) form and sending it to Member Services.