Estate Planning 101

Notifying the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) After a Loved One’s Passing

September 13, 2023

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When a loved one who was part of the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) passes away, it is essential to notify the organization. This will ensure that pension payments are stopped and any survivor benefits or death benefits are properly administered.

Who Should Be Notified

KPERS should be notified if your loved one was a retired public employee in Kansas receiving pension benefits or if they were an active member at the time of their death.

When to Notify

It's recommended to notify KPERS as soon as possible after the death of your loved one. This helps prevent any overpayments which may need to be returned.

How to Notify

You can notify KPERS of a member's death by calling their customer service line or by mail. Be prepared to provide the member's name, Social Security number, and date of death. You will also need to provide a copy of the death certificate.

What to Expect After Notification

After notifying KPERS, they will stop the deceased's pension payments. Depending on the member's plan, there may be survivor benefits or a lump sum death benefit payable. KPERS will guide you through this process and help you understand any potential benefits.

Tips for Notification

Keep all correspondence with KPERS, including the dates and times of phone calls or mailed documents. This can be helpful if there are any discrepancies or issues in the future. Also, be patient as KPERS processes your loved one's account and administers any benefits. This can sometimes take time to complete.

Conclusion

While it can be a difficult task, notifying KPERS after a loved one's death is essential. It ensures that their pension is appropriately managed and that any eligible survivor or death benefits are administered. With an understanding of the process, you can navigate this task during a challenging time.

FAQ

Q: What happens if the deceased received an overpayment after their death?
A: If KPERS was not notified promptly and continued to make pension payments, they will typically request the overpayment to be returned. It's best to discuss this directly with KPERS.

Q: What happens to my loved one's contributions if they die before retirement?
A: If a KPERS member dies before retirement, their beneficiaries or estate may be eligible for a lump-sum refund of the member's contributions and interest. This depends on the specific terms of their plan.

Q: Who can receive survivor benefits?
A: This depends on the deceased's plan and their designated beneficiaries. Typically, a spouse or children may be eligible for benefits, but KPERS will provide specifics based on the member's account.