Survivor Benefits


Survivor benefits are available for actively employed members. Several options may be available to your designated beneficiary in the event of your death before retirement. In all cases, your contributions plus interest can be distributed to your designated beneficiary.

Spouse / California State-Registered Domestic Partner or Minor Child

Regardless of whom you have designated on your Beneficiary Designation form, a spouse, California State Registered Domestic Partner or minor child(ren) may override any beneficiary designation you have made and may determine your eligible beneficiary.

Normal Survivor Benefits for Active Members

The member’s beneficiary will be entitled to a death benefit equal to accrued contributions plus accumulated interest and a lump sum payment from the employer equal to one month of final salary for each year of service completed, to a maximum of six years.

Alternate Survivor Benefits for Active Members

Under specific circumstances, the eligible beneficiary may choose an alternate form of the survivor benefit. The available options will depend upon the member’s age and accrued service at the time of death, and the circumstances of the member’s death. Contact MercedCERA for more information.

Survivor Benefits After Retirement

Upon the death of the retiree, payment of any continuance of benefits or refund of contributions is determined by the Retirement Option selected by the member at retirement and cannot be changed.