Designating beneficiaries

Determining Eligible Recipients

This section summarizes the principles that determine the eligibility for death benefits and includes these topics:

Governing Legislation

Death benefit eligibility is determined by the PSPP and statutes such as:

  • Ontario Pension Benefits Act
  • Family Law Act, and
  • Succession Law Reform Act.

How the beneficiary is determined

OPB identifies and pays the survivor and/or death benefits from the PSPP to the named beneficiaries provided by the member. Members can designate and update beneficiaries in e-services.

Death benefits from the PSPP are paid in order of priority, in accordance with the

  • payment direction provided by the late member in their Beneficiary Designations,
  • PSPP Plan text, and
  • applicable statutes.

Beneficiary designation

This section describes how members designate and update their beneficiaries.

It includes these topics:

Events requiring members to update their beneficiary

Sample life events or changes:

  • a change in marital status (marriage, commencement of a common-law relationship, separation, divorce, re-marriage), or
  • the birth or adoption of a child(ren), or
  • the death of
    • a spouse/partner, or
    • a child, or
    • a person identified as a
      • Designated Beneficiary,
      • Refund Recipient and/or
      • Payment Recipient, or
  • a change in beneficiary, refund or payment recipient, or
  • a change in estate trustee/executor, or
  • a change in member status
  • retirement or termination with deferred vested pension

Purpose of designating a beneficiary

Designating beneficiaries is important because it is how we determine eligibility for death benefits payable from the PSPP.

How to update your beneficiaries

Members can update their beneficiaries in e-services.