Survivor annuity to disabled child?


Q. With a notarized signature from the spouse, can a CSRS survivor’s annuity be left to a child who was disabled before age 18?

A. No, it cannot. However, the child may be eligible for a survivor benefit if he or she was disabled before age 18, is unmarried and is unable to support himself or herself. In 2013, the children’s rate if there is a surviving parent is $492 a month. If there is no surviving parent, it’s $594 a month.


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


  1. I don’t advise a disabled child take the survivor annuity. Once they do, they will lose a large part of their medicaid insurance coverage. They will then have to get a medigap policy. Unfortunately, the medigap policy yearly increases far out-pace the disabled child survivor annuity yearly cola increases. Also, if they were doing any part-time work they will have to stop working, as the will lose ALL medicaid funding if they don’t. Often times you are just better off not taking the child survivor annuity. IF you have FEHB for your adult child; maybe; but then your disabled child has to pay the rates of increase on THAT insurance. We need a better health care system in this country. Unfortunately, americans, health is being held hostage by unscrupulous capitalists in the medical and dental community.

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