If your death results from a work related cause, your eligible survivors and beneficiaries may qualify for benefits.
In order to receive any
occupational death benefit, your survivor must apply for it. All benefit claims should be made to the Claims Division. After your survivor begins receiving benefits (s)he should notify SERS if there is a change of address. All SERS records are maintained according to the members Social Security number. Make sure the members Social Security number is correct when filing a claim.
All benefit claims and appeals are reviewed by the SERS Executive Committee of the
Board of Trustees. If your claim is denied, or you question the payment of any benefit, you or your representative may file a written appeal or request a hearing before the Executive Committee.
If you die from a work-related injury or illness, as determined by the Workers Compensation Commission, your survivors are eligible for an occupational death benefit.
If you have no qualified survivors, your
nominated beneficiary(ies) will receive your contributions and interest, and one month’s salary for each year of service, up to a maximum of six month's salary.
Benefits are paid to qualified survivors. These amounts are reduced by any payments awarded under the Workers’ Compensation Act, or the Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act.
If you are survived by your spouse, (s)he will receive a monthly annuity equal to 66&2/3% of your salary. This benefit is payable until death.
Your Spouse and Children
If your spouse has your children under his/her care who are under age 18 (22 if full-time student), or a disabled child over age 18, they can receive benefits up to a maximum of 75% of your salary. This benefit is payable until your spouse dies, or your last child reaches age 18 (22 if full time student), marries, dies, or is no longer disabled.
If you are not survived by a spouse, but have children under age 18 (22 if full-time student), or over age 18 and disabled, they can receive a monthly annuity, up to 50% of your salary. This benefit is payable until the last child reaches age 18 (22 if full-time student), marries, dies, or is no longer disabled.
Your Dependent Parents
If your spouse or children do not survive you, your dependent parents may be eligible for benefits.
The occupational death benefit is increased 3% or one-half the annual increase in the consumer price index for the preceding calendar year whichever is less each January 1, following the first anniversary of the annuity.