OSPC - FAQS - Overview of Manitoba Pension Laws

Death Benefits

  1. If my spouse or common-law partner died before receiving a pension, am I entitled to receive those pension benefits?

    The plan your spouse or partner had must provide a pension to you, unless:

    • at the time of death, he/she was living separate and apart from you because your relationship broke down or
    • you signed a written waiver to give up the right to the pension and the waiver has not been revoked.
  2. Who receives the benefit if there is no spouse or common-law partner?

    If there is no spouse or common-law partner who is entitled to a pension, an amount may be paid to the member's designated beneficiary (a beneficiary who is not the member's spouse or common-law partner), or to the member's estate, if there is no designated beneficiary.

  3. Can the spousal benefits be waived?

    As a spouse or common-law partner who is (or might become) entitled to a benefit, you may waive your rights. This can only be done, after you have been given the necessary information (stated by the regulation) and you sign Form 2 - Waiver of Survivor or Death Benefit that you give to the administrator of the pension plan.

  4. Can I revoke the waiver?

    A waiver may be revoked before the death of the pension plan member. Both you and your spouse or common-law partner must give in a form acceptable to the plan administrator written notice that you wish to revoke the waiver.

  5. How are the benefits payable?

    As a spouse or common-law partner, you may transfer the value of the pension to either a Locked in Retirement Account (LIRA) or Life Income Fund (LIF).

    A LIRA is a RRSP that is subject to the requirement of the act. It holds pension funds on a locked-in basis until they are used for retirement purposes.

    A LIF is a RRIF that is subject to the requirements of the act. It pays an adjustable flow of retirement income to the LIF holder based on prescribed annuity factors.

    Any benefits payable to an estate or beneficiary are payable as a lump sum.

  6. If I die before retirement, will my spouse or common-law partner receive financial information about my plan?

    Yes. The plan administrator must provide a pre-retirement death statement within 60 days of receiving proper notification of your death. This statement will outline the benefits payable and any options available.

  7. If my spouse or common-law partner died after receiving a pension, will I receive any benefits?

    As a spouse or common law partner, your entitlement to a pension will be based on the form of pension your spouse or partner chose when he/she retired. For example, if the joint pension (which is a form of pension that pays a pension to the retiree for his/her lifetime and, after death, to the spouse or common-law partner for his/her lifetime) was not waived at retirement, you are entitled to the survivor pension. If it was waived and your spouse or partner chose a single life pension, (which is a pension that pays a pension for the retiree?s lifetime only) you won?t receive any further benefits.

  8. If I am a joint annuitant (who is the person who receives the pension for his/her lifetime after the member?s death) and am receiving a survivor pension, will I lose my pension if I remarry or enter into a common-law relationship?

    No. Survivor benefits do not cease when you remarry or enter into a common-law relationship.

Top of page