When an active member dies for reasons related to employment (i.e., service-connected), the benefits payable to a beneficiary does not depend on the member’s years of retirement service credit or age at the time of death. Benefits may include:
- A surviving spouse may elect a monthly retirement benefit, payable for life, equal to 100% of the benefit that the deceased member would have been entitled to if he or she had retired with a service-connected disability as of the date of death.
- If a member is killed in the performance of duty or dies from an accident or injury caused by external violence or physical force incurred in the performance of duty, a surviving spouse may be paid an additional monthly benefit for minor children until the age of 18 (continuing through age 21 if they remain unmarried and regularly enrolled as full-time students in an accredited school). An additional 25% of the basic retirement benefit is paid for one child, 40% for two children, or 50% for three or more children. The benefit may also be payable to the legal guardian of a member’s children.
- If a Safety member is killed in the performance of duty or dies as a result of an accident or injury caused by external violence or physical force incurred in the performance of duty, a surviving spouse will receive an additional one-time, lump-sum payment equal to 12 months of salary based on the deceased member’s monthly compensation at the time of death.