If your benefit plan includes Life Insurance, Accidental Death & Dismemberment or Accidental & Serious Illness benefits, the employee should identify a beneficiary at the time of enrollment. In the event of the death of the member, any applicable benefits will be paid to the named beneficiary.
- If your member completes a paper Enrollment Card, the beneficiary section must be completed, signed, and dated in ink by the member. The member must initial any changes or alterations, no matter how small.
- If you choose to add the beneficiary information directly into WEBS™, you must print the WEBS™- generated Enrollment Application to be signed and dated in ink by the member.
WEBS™ allows separate beneficiary designations by benefit, whereas the paper Enrollment Card does not.
Things to consider about Beneficiary Designations
- The Beneficiary Designation is a legal document. Correction fluid/tape is not acceptable.
- To name one beneficiary, the member must state the full name and relationship of the beneficiary to the member, and “100%.”
- If more than one beneficiary is named, the member must designate a percentage of benefits. (Ensure the total of the designated percentages equals 100%.)
- If the member does not wish to designate a specific beneficiary, or if no beneficiary is designated, the benefit will be paid to the member’s Estate. (This may result in a reduction of benefits due to Estate taxes and probate fees.)
- A member can also name a “Contingent Beneficiary,” an individual who would receive any applicable benefits next, after the death of the first beneficiary. You cannot add a Contingent Beneficiary via WEBS™, so please ensure the member completes the paper Enrollment Card.
- Members cannot name a bank or financial institution as a beneficiary for the purposes of providing collateral for a loan.
- If a minor (child) is named as a Beneficiary, the member should name a Trustee. On the paper Enrollment Cards, the Trustee field is not mandatory. Explain to the member that if a Trustee is not named, the Life Claim benefit will be released to the Public Trustee in the province of residence, to be held until the child attains the age of majority. On WEBS™, if the Beneficiary is under age 19 the “Declaration Appointing a Trustee” will automatically open. WEBS™ will ask for an address for Trustee, but GroupHEALTH does not require this information. To by-pass, simply enter a period.
Revocable and Irrevocable Beneficiary
Group Insurance does not allow for irrevocable beneficiary designations except in the province of Quebec. The member may agree to name an individual as a beneficiary, but the carrier is not responsible if a change is made. An individual policy may be a better solution to ensure that the court order is complied with.