Chicago Police Lieutenants Association

Pension Information for Active & Retired Members

The information in this article is for both Active & Retired Lt.’s. It is reprinted here with the permission of the author, Russ Schaefer, from the Aug/22 newsletter of the Retired Chicago Police Association.

    In April of this year my very first partner out of the Academy passed away at age 83. At his wake I encouraged his wife to contact me going forward in dealing with his pension annuity if there were any problems. Well, the problem that surfaced was not with the Pension Fund or it’s Representatives, but with the gathering of documents required for one to make a Beneficiary Claim. Had these documents been gathered and in the proper place prior to the passing of the officer the process would have been easier and more efficient in getting the initial payouts to her. The information that follows was obtained from one of our Pension Representatives, Jackie Robinson.

    It is extremely important that officers (active and retired) continue to keep the Fund abreast of all life event changes. A member can start now by contacting the Fund to ensure that his/her record is current and that the latest Death Benefit Directive is on file. The more the member can do now, the less taxing it will be for the survivors. The Death Benefit Directive only applies to the Ordinary Death Benefit, which for a retired member, is $6,000.00.

    To obtain the directive form you can go to the PABF website: Click on “Forms” at the bottom of the page, click on Death Benefit, complete the form online and print. The form must be signed in the presence of a Notary Public. Once completed return the form to the Fund.

    The following documents are required by the Fund

        • A copy of the official certified marriage certificate

        • A copy of the official certified birth certificate for the surviving spouse (Also, if applicable, for the biological (or adopted) minor and/or disabled children of the retiree).

        • Proof that all prior marriages have been terminated (This applies to both, the retiree, and the surviving spouse)

        • A copy of the final Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage, or

        • A copy the certified death certificate If these documents were not submitted at retirement, it is highly suggested that the retiree submits them ASAP.

    When a retired member passes, the family should immediately notify the Fund by calling a Fund representative at 312-235-4596 –or- by email at: The representative will let the family know what benefits are available. If the surviving spouse (and/or minor/disabled children) are entitled to collect a pension, the Fund will require the above-mentioned documents unless they are already on file.

    In addition, the Fund will require the surviving spouse to submit the following:

     • A copy of the official certified death certificate

    • A copy of surviving spouse’s current driver’s license or state ID and

    • If the surviving spouse has a financial representative

    • A copy of the Power of Attorney

    • A copy of the agent’s current driver’s license or state ID

    Note: This entire process begins with retired members going to the Funds Web Site and going to the Forms location and filling out the Death Benefit PDF Form as stated above. As time goes on if your Beneficiary changes such as death, divorce or otherwise make sure you update that Directive and the required forms.

    Note: Minor children will remain as beneficiaries until the age of 18. Disabled children will remain beneficiaries for life. If a child is adopted have documentation relative to supporting the family relationship with that adopted child available.

    Now here is an important part of this gathering process! Once all this initial required information is gathered make several copies for all interested and affected parties. Most importantly place one of the copies of all this material into a single portfolio and ensure that it is delivered to the PABF to place on file well prior to the death of a pensioner. This will ensure that this material is available to them immediately to assist in a timely and efficient redirection of funds and benefits. Once that is done and the PABF has this information on file the only thing that you will have to add is the Certified Death Certificate after the pensioner’s death and the required picture identification for spouse or attorney.

    Please take the time to make your passing less stressful to those loved ones that you leave behind and get ahead of this process.

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