Surviving spouse and beneficiaries

Remarriage of a surviving spouse

This section provides details on benefits for surviving spouses who remarry. It includes these topics:

Pension payments for re-married surviving spouse

When the surviving spouse remarries after the death of the member, then

  • the surviving spouse continues to receive the survivor pension for the duration of their lifetime, but
  • the new spouse is not entitled to receive insured benefits coverage or a survivor pension.

When the surviving spouse dies

When a surviving spouse dies, then

  • a family member or estate representative must notify OPB of the death of surviving spouse and provide:
    • a certified true copy of the death certificate, or
    • funeral director's statement
  • OPB advises if additional documents are required,
  • OPB determines if there is a survivor pension payable to any Eligible Children, and, if not then
  • OPB calculates and distributes any existing residual balance.

Residual Balance

A Residual Balance is a lump sum payment equal to the amount by which the member contributions with interest exceed the total pension payments that were made from the PSPP, either

  • to the member as a former member and/or
  • as a Survivor Pension to the former member's Eligible Spouse or Child(ren) as the result of the former member's death.

If the value of total pension payments made exceeds that of the member contributions with interest, then no Residual Balance is payable.

This summarizes how OPB handles any existing Residual Balance.

When there is... Then...
an Eligible Child(ren) a survivor pension is payable to the Eligible Child(ren) until they are no longer deemed Eligible
a Residual Balance any existing residual balance goes to the Designated Beneficiary(ies) according to the designated beneficiaries on file from the deceased pensioner. 

The new spouse is not entitled to receive insured benefits or survivor pension benefits.
no Residual Balance the payments cease effective the first of the month following the date of death of the Eligible Spouse.

Death of a spouse or beneficiary

This subsection describes what happens when a spouse or beneficiary dies before the member and includes these topics:

Death of a spouse

When a spouse dies before the member or pensioner, the member or pensioner must update their beneficiaries online in e-services, and complete and return the following forms

When the spouse dies... Required Forms and Documentaiton

Before the member retires

After the pensioner retires

Important: OPB cannot process a member's pension entitlement(s) without full documentation.

Beneficiaries who die before Members or Retirees

If a beneficiary dies before a member or retired member, then the member or retired member must update their beneficiaries online.