Beneficiaries

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If you are the beneficiary of an IPERS member, it’s important to understand IPERS benefits and what you need to do following the death of a loved one. We are here to help you understand the process during this difficult time.

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Eligibility for Death Benefits
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The IPERS beneficiary designation form takes the place of many legal documents such as wills or assignments. A beneficiary designation might be determined by a divorce decree. If a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is in place, IPERS will pay the benefits as specified by the order.

If a member dies before designating a beneficiary, IPERS will pay benefits based on the laws of intestate succession determined by the Iowa Code. 

If you are an IPERS member and also a beneficiary for a member, you may receive IPERS retirement and death benefits at the same time.

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What Beneficiaries Should Know About IPERS 

Notify IPERS of the Death

If you are a beneficiary of an IPERS member, please notify IPERS of a member's death as soon as possible.

End Monthly Benefit Payments

If a member dies during retirement, the benefit payments stop the month of the member’s death. (For example, if a member dies in July, the last monthly pension payment will be made at the end of July.) 

If any additional retirement benefits are paid after the month of the member’s death, these payments must be returned to IPERS.

Pre-retirement Death Benefits

The type of benefit available to a beneficiary(ies) depends on whether the member was vested. Visit the Death Benefits page to learn more about pre-retirement death benefits.

Roll Benefits Into Another Retirement Account

As a beneficiary, you may be eligible to roll your benefits into an IRA, BDA/Inherited IRA or another qualified retirement plan. To do this, you must elect to receive your benefit payment in a lump sum. Consult your financial planner to learn more about your rollover options.

My Account, Your IPERS Retirement Toolkit

All beneficiaries who receive monthly retirement benefits can access My Account. The month you begin to receive benefit payments, you should receive a letter with your username. A separate letter with a temporary password will follow a few days later. If you need help accessing My Account, contact IPERS

In addition, beneficiaries can also: 

  • View your benefit payment history.
  • View and change direct deposit information.
  • View and change your tax withholdings.
  • View income verification information.
  • Update your contact information.

Tax Information

IPERS benefits are subject to all applicable federal and state taxes. You may receive an IRS Form 1099-R in the member’s name, depending on your relationship to the member. If your death benefit payments are ongoing, you will also receive a 1099-R each year you receive benefits.

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Report a Death

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Does a Spouse Survive?

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If yes, please complete the following:

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If no, please complete the following:
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