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The passing of a loved one is perhaps the most painful event in life. No one should have to grieve alone. At this time of a loss it is important to surround yourself with your personal support group who can help console and counsel you at this time. Your personal support group includes family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, and your religious community. In some cases you may also wish to seek the guidance of a professional counselor. In coming to terms with your loss, you will take some time to recollect your loved one. You can appreciate the blessings which their presence brought to your life, even if the time they could stay with you seems to have ended too soon.
“Nothing is so strong as gentleness and
nothing is so gentle as real strength”
–Ralph W. Sockman
With the support of your friends and family you will be able to gather the strength to complete the necessary details which must be faced by the survivors. There is much to do; the linked check list may give you a starting point from which to work. It is advisable that the tasks be divided up, if possible, between loved ones. In this manner, the necessary steps can be completed, and no one person bears the entire burden. It is natural and normal that the pain and grief of the survivors will take some time to heal. Make full use of your personal support network.
- In the event of the death of a participant, the Trust Customer Service Office should be notified. Staff at the Trust Customer Service Office are ready to help as much as possible, and to make sure the survivors understand the benefits, obtain the necessary forms and know how to submit the required documentation.
- If you are the participant and are planning for what must come, the following plan issues will be pertinent. You will want to make sure that your beneficiaries have been properly designated for Plan benefits using the Enrollment and Beneficiary Designation for the Health Plan.
- Plan benefits for covered participants which go into effect at death include: a death benefit of $25,000 for Active Employees and $5,000 for retirees (see the Life BenefitTab).
- If the participant was already retired before death, benefits to the beneficiary will depend upon the form in which the pension had been taken (see How Benefits are Paid in the Pension SPD).
- If the participant was not already retired before death, benefits to the beneficiary will be according to the rules governing the Pre-Retirement Death benefit.
- In the event of the death of the retired participant, (or of a pre-retiree who met the rules for retiree coverage), the participant’s dependent spouse and children may continue to be covered by the Welfare Trust by making the appropriate election and monthly self-payments.