Survivors' Benefits

What is Survivors' Benefit?

This is a benefit payable to certain family members of a deceased insured person who was receiving Invalidity or Age Pension or would have been entitled to Invalidity or Age benefit at the time of death.

Survivors' Benefit is either a pension or a grant. A pension is payable monthly for a specific period or for life, if the deceased person had satisfied the conditions for an Invalidity or Age Pension. A grant, which is a one-time payment, is payable if the deceased person would have been entitled to an Invalidity or Age grant.


Which survivors of the deceased may be entitled to payments?

Survivors of the deceased who may be entitled to payments are:

  • Widow
  • Invalid Widower
  • Unmarried children under the age of 16 or under age 18 if going to school at the time of death


When does a widower or widow become entitled to Survivors' Benefit?

A widower/widow shall receive Survivor’s Benefit as follows, except where the marriage took place after the insured person started receiving pension:

  1. A widow who at the time of her husband’s death was fifty years or older and been married for not less than three years shall receive a pension for life or a grant.
  2. A widow who was an invalid at the time of her husband’s death, regardless of her age, shall receive a pension until the invalidity ceases, or a grant.
  3. All other widows shall receive one year’s pension.
  4. Widower who was an invalid at the time of his wife’s death, had been married not less than three years and had been wholly or mainly supported by his wife before death, shall receive a Survivor’s Pension for so long as the invalidity continues, or a Survivor’s Grant.
  5. A Widow or widower who cohabit or remarried will have their pension cease.


How much is a widower's/widow's pension?

A widower's/widow's pension is 50% of the pension the deceased insured person was receiving or would have received. However, no widower/widow shall receive less than $350.00 per month.


How much is a child's pension?

A child's pension is 25% of the pension the deceased insured person was receiving or would have received; where the child is an orphan or an invalid, the amount is 40%. However, no child shall receive less than $87.50 per month.


How much is paid for Survivors' Grant?

The Survivors' Grant is the amount that the deceased person would have been entitled to for Invalidity or Age Grant, i.e. 75% of the total contributions (employee and employer) paid up to the time of death, or $1,200 whichever is greater. This amount is distributed on the same basis as the pension.


How does a survivor make a claim?

Applications must be made within one year of the death of the insured person. The death certificate must be presented to the Social Security Office where an application will be made for Survivors' Benefit.

In addition, the widower/widow is required to submit the marriage certificate and his or her birth certificate or a valid passport is required if applicable to the Social Security Office. In the case of an invalid widower/widow, a medical certificate stating the disability is required as well.

When claiming for a child, the child's birth certificate must be submitted. If the father is the deceased parent and his name is not on the certificate, proof of paternity (evidence that he was the child's father) must be submitted. Also, a life certificate must be submitted when the claim is made.  A letter must be submitted from the school whether local or overseas by the end of September to avoid delay.


When and how will I receive my pension?

Your Survivors’ Pension is payable monthly either by cheque mailed to your mailing address or through your bank account, or be paid to a payee’s bank account whom you have nominated.

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