If you get married before you retire, contact the SEIU Benefit Funds to update your records. Your new spouse will automatically become your beneficiary. If you would like to name someone other than your spouse, you will need to submit a signed and notarized Spousal Waiver Form.
When you retire, the payment option you elect can provide a benefit for your spouse in the event you die before your spouse. The standard form of payment for married participants is the 50% Spousal Pension, which allows your spouse to receive half of your monthly pension amount you were receiving prior to your death. You may choose to provide a greater benefit (either 75% or 100%) or you may choose to provide no benefit at all, but you’ll need your spouse’s consent if you elect that option.
If you get married after retirement, your pension benefits will not be affected; you’ll continue to receive the same monthly pension benefit, and benefits will generally stop when you die.
If you get divorced, contact the SEIU Benefit Funds to update your records. You may need to name a new beneficiary. If you get divorced before you retire, and you do not remarry, your pension generally will be paid as a Straight Life Annuity, unless there is a court-approved Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) that affects how your retirement benefits will be paid. If you get divorced after retirement, your form of pension benefit will not change, but a QDRO may affect the amount you receive.
If you stop working in covered employment and you are vested, you are eligible to receive a pension benefit starting at age 55. If you stop working in covered employment and you are not vested, you may incur a permanent break-in-service and lose any pension or vesting credits you have earned.
If you are ready to retire from covered employment, contact the Benefit Funds about three months before your preferred retirement date to begin getting your paperwork in order. You’ll receive your work history, an estimate of your pension and an explanation of the payment options available to you.
You will need to complete an Application. Once you have successfully applied for your pension, you will begin receiving your pension benefit on either:
The first of the month following your last day of work;
The first of the month following the date you filed your completed pension application; or
The date you requested on your Pension application.
If you sign up for Direct Deposit, your pension check will be deposited automatically in your bank account on the first business day of every month. If not, your monthly pension check generally will be mailed two to three days before the last working day of every month for the following month. Once you begin receiving your pension, you cannot change your payment option. Refer to the FAQs for answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about applying for your pension.
If your spouse or beneficiary dies before you retire, contact the SEIU Benefit Funds to update your records and name a new beneficiary. If your spouse or beneficiary dies after you retire and you elected a pension payment option that provides for a survivor with a pop-up provision (like the 50% or 100% Spousal Pension, or the 50% Joint and Survivor Pension), your pension will be adjusted to the full amount you would have received if you had elected a Straight Life Annuity. If you elect a Straight Life Annuity, or any of the other above options without the pop-up feature, your monthly benefit will remain the same. Your payment option cannot be changed after you retire.
If you die after you retire and you have elected a form of payment that provides a benefit for your spouse or survivor, he or she will receive a percentage (either 50%, 75% or 100%, depending on your election) of the amount you were receiving prior to your death for his or her lifetime. If you elected a Straight Life Annuity with a 60-month Guarantee, and you die before this guaranteed amount has been paid, the balance will be paid to your beneficiary. Your spouse or beneficiary should contact the SEIU Benefit Funds in the event of your death.