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Benefit Payment Options

Listed below are all of the forms of payment available under the Plan. You choose a form of payment and, if applicable, name a beneficiary at the time you retire.

Important note: You may not change the form of payment or your beneficiary designation after your retirement date under any circumstances. In addition, if your beneficiary predeceases you after you retire, you cannot name a new beneficiary as a replacement. In this case, no survivor’s benefit is payable, even if you later remarry.

Single life option:

Provides a monthly benefit for your lifetime only. No survivor’s benefit is payable after you die.

This is the normal form of payment (the default option) if you are not married at the time you retire.

Joint and survivor option:

Provides an actuarially reduced monthly benefit for your lifetime and, after your death, a monthly survivor’s benefit to your named beneficiary for his or her lifetime.

  • The survivor’s benefit can equal 50%, 75%, or 100% of your benefit.
  • Your benefit is actuarially reduced to pay for the cost of providing the survivor’s benefit.
  • Upon your death, your beneficiary will receive the survivor’s benefit that you elected at retirement.

The 50% joint and survivor option is the normal form of payment (the default option) if you are married at the time you retire.

15-year certain and life option:

Provides a reduced monthly benefit for your lifetime and may or may not provide a survivor’s benefit depending on when you die. If you die after receiving payments for 15 years, no further benefits will be paid after your death. However, if you die before receiving payments for 15 years, then your named beneficiary will receive a monthly benefit for the remainder of the 15-year period. If your beneficiary dies before the end of the 15-year period, the balance of any remaining payments will be paid to the estate of whoever is the last to survive.

Lump sum payment of small benefit:

Provides a single payment of your entire retirement benefit if the value is below a certain amount. A lump sum payment may be mandatory or optional, as further explained below.

  • If your monthly benefit is $50 or less and the actuarial equivalent value (that is, present value) of your total retirement benefit is $1,000 or less, your entire retirement benefit automatically will be paid in a single lump sum.
  • If the previous bullet does not apply and your monthly benefit is less than or equal to $100, you may elect to receive a single lump sum payment of your entire retirement benefit. If you are married, your spouse must provide consent.

Lump-sum benefits generally may be rolled over to another eligible retirement plan or individual retirement account, unless the IRS required beginning date applies.

Spousal Consent

Spousal consent is not required if you are married and elect any of the joint and survivor options for your spouse. However, your spouse’s consent will be required if you want to:

  • Choose the single life option or 15-year certain and life option; and/or
  • Name someone other than your spouse as your beneficiary.

Benefit Payment Options