2007 ORS 238.390¹
Death benefit

(1) If a member of the system dies before retiring, the amount of money, if any, credited at the time of death to the member account of the member in the fund shall be paid to the beneficiaries designated by the member. For this purpose a member may designate as a beneficiary any person or the executor or administrator of the estate of the member or a trustee named by the member to execute an express trust in regard to such amount. The termination of a person’s membership in the system pursuant to ORS 238.095 (Termination of membership) (1) or (2) invalidates any designation of beneficiary made by the person before the termination of membership.

(2) If a member dies before retiring and has not designated a beneficiary under subsection (1) of this section, the Public Employees Retirement Board shall pay the amount of money, if any, credited at the time of death to the member account of the deceased member to a personal representative appointed for the estate of the deceased member. If an affidavit has been filed under ORS 114.505 (Definitions for ORS 114.505 to 114.560) to 114.560 (Exclusive remedy), and the amount of money credited to the account does not exceed the maximum amount of personal property for which an affidavit may be filed under ORS 114.505 (Definitions for ORS 114.505 to 114.560) to 114.560 (Exclusive remedy), the board shall pay the amount to the person who filed the affidavit.

(3) The beneficiary designated under subsection (1) of this section may elect to receive the amount payable in actuarially determined monthly payments for the life of such beneficiary as long as such monthly payments are at least $200.

(4) Accrued benefits due a retired member at the time of death are payable to the designated beneficiary or as provided in subsection (2) of this section. For the purpose of determining accrued benefits due a retired member at the time of death, accrued benefits are considered to have ceased as of the last day of the month preceding the month in which the retired member dies; but if Option 2 or Option 3 under ORS 238.305 (Optional service retirement allowance calculations) has been elected as provided in this chapter and the beneficiary survives the retired member, the benefits to the beneficiary shall commence as of the first day of the month in which the retired member dies, and payment of benefits under Option 2 or Option 3 shall cease with the payment for the month preceding the month in which the beneficiary dies.

(5) If a member dies before retiring and has designated a beneficiary under subsection (1) of this section, but the beneficiary dies before the member, or dies before distribution is made under this section, the Public Employees Retirement Board shall pay the amount of money, if any, that would otherwise have been paid to the beneficiary to a personal representative appointed for the estate of the deceased beneficiary. If an affidavit has been filed under ORS 114.505 (Definitions for ORS 114.505 to 114.560) to 114.560 (Exclusive remedy), and the amount of money that would have been paid to the beneficiary does not exceed the maximum amount of personal property for which an affidavit may be filed under ORS 114.505 (Definitions for ORS 114.505 to 114.560) to 114.560 (Exclusive remedy), the board shall pay the amount to the person who filed the affidavit on behalf of the estate of the beneficiary.

(6) Interest upon the member account of the member shall accrue until the date that the amount in the member account is distributed. Any balance in the variable account of the deceased member is considered to be transferred to the regular account of the member as of the date of death. The board shall establish procedures for computing and crediting interest on the balance in the member account for the period between the date of death and date of distribution.

(7) Payment by the board of amounts in the manner provided by this section completely discharges the board and system on account of the death, and shall hold the board and system harmless from any claim for wrongful payment. [Formerly 237.165; 2001 c.945 §56; 2003 c.67 §25; 2003 c.625 §1; 2005 c.808 §28]

Notes of Decisions

Marriage dissolu­tion does not affect validity of employee's designa­tion of spouse as beneficiary. Wilkinson v. Public Employees Retire­ment Board, 188 Or App 97, 69 P3d 1266 (2003)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 238—Public Employees Retirement System, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­238.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 238, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­238ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.