Death of a Beneficiary

If your spouse or civil union partner dies, it's considered a qualifying change in status. It allows you to add eligible dependents who had insurance coverage under the person who died. This does not include stepchildren or the children of a civil union partner, unless you adopted them or were granted legal guardianship of them. You can also opt back in to group insurance coverage if you previously opted out.

If your spouse, civil union partner or dependent dies, you may increase or decrease your optional life insurance coverage. You must notify the agency in writing within 60 days of the death. The dependents of the person who died may be eligible for survivor benefits.

You'll need to supply some providers with a copy of the death certificate or an obituary. See suggested updates.

Read about taking time off work for a bereavement leave.

Learn how to report the death of a spouse or dependent to SURS.


Suggested Updates

When a life change occurs, it's important to update your information and benefits to meet your new needs.

Personal Information

Submit changes to your name or address with the Personal Data - Name Address Form (XLS).

Paycheck and Tax Exemptions

If your marital status or number of dependents changes, adjust your tax exemptions on your paycheck by submitting updated federal and Illinois W-4 forms.

If your bank account changes, update your Direct Deposit (XLS) form.

Retirement Benefits

Update beneficiary information for your State University Retirement System (SURS) pension online or by calling 1-800-275-7877.

You should also update your beneficiary information with your supplemental retirement plan provider. 

Insurance Benefits

Call us at 815-753-6000 to add or remove insurance coverage. You may need to supply a birth or adoption certificate, Social Security number, death certificate or obituary, divorce decree, or other document.

Life Insurance

Update beneficiary information for your life insurance through Central Management Services.

Submit a claim through Human Resource Services to Securian Financial. You'll need to supply a copy of the death certificate or obituary.

Disclaimer: The information contained in the Life Events section is a summary and may not include all conditions, limitations, or exceptions that may be applicable to a particular situation. Every effort has been made to present current information without inaccuracies; however, errors, additions, deletions, and changes in the laws or procedures may occur and could make the information out of date or inaccurate. Therefore, users of this website are advised of their responsibility to contact the HRS Service Center (815-753-6000) directly for specific information relating to benefits and to confirm the accuracy and completeness of the posted information.

Contact Us

Human Resource Services
Human Resources/Document Services Building
1515 West Lincoln Highway
P: 815-753-6000
F: 815-753-2335
humanresources@niu.edu

State and Federal Notices

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