Here’s some important information to put into order for your family regarding your federal benefits for their use at the time of your death (or to use yourself if your spouse is also a federal retiree and pre-deceases you).
To report the death of an annuitant or a survivor beneficiary, they will need to call the Office of Personnel Management at (888) 767-6738 or write to: U.S. Office of Personnel Management, Post Office Box 45, Boyers, Pennsylvania, 16017-0045, or access the Services Online site (http://www.servicesonline.opm.gov/mainris.htm).
They will need to provide the full name and date of death, as your retirement claim number and Social Security number. OPM will tell you if there are any further benefits payable, and send the necessary claim forms.
If your annuity payments are being deposited directly into your bank account, your survivors should immediately notify the bank of your death. Your survivors should write or telephone the Office of Personnel Management at (888) 767-6738 asking for an application for death benefits. (If you are among the few retirees receiving physical checks, your survivor should return any check uncashed at the time of your death.)
As soon as OPM learns of a death, it will send an Application for Death Benefits–SF 2800 for CSRS or SF 3104 for FERS–to the person(s) who appears to be entitled to either survivor or lump-sum death benefits.
To claim Federal Employees Group Life Insurance benefits, the beneficiary or other survivors must complete a Claim for Death Benefits (FE-6) and submit it along with a certified death certificate. If you were an active employee, your beneficiary or other survivor may contact your human resources office for a claim form or get one at www.opm.gov/forms or call the number above. Survivors of retirees may get the form from those sources and from the Office of Personnel Management, Post Office Box 45, Boyers, PA, 16017-0045.
In order for your Thrift Savings Plan account balance to be distributed after your death, form TSP-17, Information Relating to Deceased Participant, must be submitted to the TSP S together with a copy of your certified death certificate. The form is available through personnel offices and at www.tsp.gov.
Note: While you’re at it, be sure to double check the designations of beneficiaries you made under those programs. Your preference now might be different than when you made that election and if so, you will need to file a new beneficiary election form for each.