Survivor, family benefits after divorce


Q: My father passed away at age 79 on Oct. 29. He and my mother divorced Jan. 31, 1985, and she never remarried. He remarried, but his wife passed away Jan. 26, 2009. He has two adult children from his first marriage. Would his former spouse be entitled to any benefits before his children? There is no beneficiary and no court order on file.

A: She wouldn’t be entitled to any retirement benefits. Whether she would have title to any Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance benefits would depend on who he had designated as his beneficiary.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to

Leave A Reply