As we have previously discussed, a couple would file with a retirement system that provides for the division of a pension as a marital asset and/or the removal of a survivor option from a pension that is already in pay status.
In this article, let us briefly look at the Domestic Relations Order in Michigan and the documentary requirements that came with it.
What Should You Prepare Upon the Death of the Former Spouse?
If your former spouse passed, the following situations would apply:
- If the former spouse dies, a copy of the death certificate must be submitted to ORS and all payments to the former spouse under the DRO will cease. If the former spouse predeceases the retiree, the Retiree’s pension will be adjusted to reflect the share of the pension previously assigned to the former spouse under the DRO:
- However, if a survivor option was not elected at the time of retirement or was voided under the divorce, the retiree’s pension will be increased by the amount paid to the former spouse under the DRO.
- If at the time of retirement, the retiree elected a survivor option and designated the former spouse as beneficiary and if that option remains in effect, the retiree’s pension will be increased by the amount paid to the former spouse under the DRO and will be adjusted to a straight life allowance.
What happens if the spouse entitled to the pension dies?
The answer provided by Michigan State is simple: If the retiree dies, all payments authorized by the DRO cease to the former spouse. If a survivor option was chosen at retirement and remains in effect, the survivor pension will become payable to the named pension beneficiary on the first day of the month following the retiree’s death.
If you think that this is complicated and you still need legal help, we are here for you.
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