Pension payment designated to be paid to the deceased’s estate

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Pension payment designated to be paid to the deceased’s estate

As the sole child and heir of my late parents’ assets, according to their Will and as their designate power of attorney, I’m needing advice on what documentation will be needed to receive my father’s pension benefit from his employer designated to be paid to his estate. My mother pre-deceased him last year. The company tells me that since this benefit doesn’t name a beneficiary, I will need to provide documentation for their consideration in paying out the pension benefit to me. I will soon be in receipt of a company letter with information on my father’s pension plan benefits, so they will not discuss it in any more detail than given in the phone call to me today. I’ve already provided the company benefits coordinator official copies of my parents’ death certificates, and have been asked to fax my father’s birth certification and social security number to them for further handling of this issue. The only

Asked on December 13, 2017 under Estate Planning, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You should also provide a copy of the last will that designates you as the executor and beneficiary of the estates.  It is this document which grants you the right to inherit.  If the pension administrator is still nervous about whether or not you are the final heir, you may need to file a simple probate and have a judge declare you as the sole heir, put it in a court order, and then send it to the pension administrators.  
However, before you go throug all of these hoops, consult with a probate attorney and let them review what information you have regarding the pension plan.  Some pensions only permit spouses and minor children to be disignated as beneficiaries.  If this is that type of plan, then you don't need to go through the probate process, only to be denied benefits because of a plan administration requirement.

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