For monthly survivor benefits to be available a member must have met one of the following qualifications:
- Had at least 18 months of Ohio service credit with three of those months within the two and one-half years immediately before death, or
- Was receiving a disability benefit from OPERS, or
- Was eligible for retirement, but did not retire and continued to work.
- Were a law enforcement member whose primary (50 percent each month) duties were to preserve the peace, to protect life and property, and to enforce the laws within your jurisdiction, or a full-time bailiff or deputy bailiff appointed by the Hamilton County Municipal Clerk of Courts under Division (A)(3) of Section 1901.32.
The following two tables show schedules of monthly survivor benefits for which eligible beneficiaries may qualify.
- Table: Annual Benefit as a % of Decedent's Final Average Salary
- Table: Annual Benefit as a % of Decedent's Final Average Salary based on 20+ years of service
|Annual Benefit as a % of Decedent's Final Average Salary|
|1 qualified survivors||25% of FAS or $250, whichever is greater|
|2 qualified survivors||40% of FAS or $400, whichever is greater|
|3 qualified survivors||50% of FAS or $500, whichever is greater|
|4 qualified survivors||55% of FAS or $500, whichever is greater|
|5 or more qualified survivors||60% of FAS or $500, whichever is greater|
|Annual Benefit as a % of Decedent's Final Average Salary
based on 20 or more years of service
|20 years||29% of FAS|
|21 years||33% of FAS|
|22 years||37% of FAS|
|23 years||41% of FAS|
|24 years||45% of FAS|
|25 years||48% of FAS|
|26 years||51% of FAS|
|27 years||54% of FAS|
|28 years||57% of FAS|
|29 years||60% of FAS|
In addition, the member's beneficiary must be qualified to receive monthly benefits. Qualified beneficiaries, if otherwise eligible, include:
If you had less than 10 full years, but at least 18 full months, of Ohio service credit, your surviving spouse (at age 62 or older with no children eligible for monthly benefits) may receive the greater of $250 per month or 25 percent of your final average salary.
If you had at least 10 full years of Ohio service credit, your surviving spouse (with no children eligible for monthly benefits) may receive benefits of $250 a month, an amount equal to 25 percent of the final average salary, or a percent determined by your service (if over 20 years), whichever is higher.
These benefits are payable regardless of the age of a surviving spouse adjudged physically or mentally incompetent. Also, a spouse with children eligible for monthly benefits will receive a benefit effective the first of the month following the member's death regardless of the age of the spouse.
As long as you did not have any children eligible for monthly benefits, and you were eligible to retire on a monthly benefit but chose to stay on the job, a monthly benefit for your spouse at your death may be figured as though you had retired and taken the Joint Life Plan. This option provides for the monthly allowance to continue through your spouse's lifetime.
A child may qualify for monthly benefits if they have never been married and are a natural or legally adopted child under age 18 (or 22 if a qualified student attending an accredited school), or a child, of any age, who is physically or mentally incompetent at the time of your death. Benefits terminate upon the child's first marriage, adoption by someone other than a step-parent, abandonment, entry into active military service or death.
Also, survivor benefits will be stopped when a child reaches age 18 unless proof is submitted that the child is attending an institution of learning or training and pursuing a program of study equivalent to at least two-thirds of the full-time curriculum requirements of the school. Forms are provided by OPERS for submission of the necessary proof by the surviving spouse or student, and by the school.
A dependent parent is one who received at least one-half support from you during the 12 months preceding your death. A dependent parent may receive survivor benefits if age 65 or older, or at any age if adjudged physically or mentally incompetent. Payments to dependent parents stop in the event of a first marriage or death.