Report a Death

Call our retirement counseling centers at 1.800.633.5461 and provide the deceased SERS member's:


Also provide your name and contact information so that a SERS staffer can reach you with questions, information, and instruction.

According to law, SERS must receive a certified death certificate before paying any death benefit or survivor annuity.

SERS Will Research

When a member's death is reported to us, we research the member's record for instructions. For instance, did the member name a beneficiary? If the member is retired, did he or she choose a payment option that provides monthly payments for a named survivor?

If so, we contact the individuals named in those records for additional information and instructions.

Beneficiaries Should Know

Beneficiaries are those designated in writing by the SERS member to receive any death benefit that may be payable from his or her SERS benefit.

Beneficiaries who are entitled to less than $10,000 will be paid in a lump sum. Those who are entitled to $10,000 or more may choose from a number of payment options.

While Pennsylvania inheritance tax is not applicable to SERS death benefit payments, contact the IRS or a professional tax consultant for questions about federal estate taxes.

Survivors Should Know

A survivor is one person the SERS member named at the time of his or her retirement to receive monthly payments after the member's death.

We will establish a member record for the survivor and make monthly payments according to the survivor payment option chosen by the deceased member.