Do I have the right to know who my ex’s beneficiary is?


Q. I have been divorced for 11 years. My ex died in February. I was listed as the beneficiary for his work-life policy, however, the union is stating that I am not listed on his pension. I have not received any documentation or correspondence confirming that. On his death certificate, it stated he was divorced and never remarried. His four children are not minors or disabled. Do I have the right to know who the beneficiary is?
— Ex

A. We’re sorry to hear about your ex.

Unfortunately, the union is not obligated to disclose the names of the designated beneficiary or beneficiaries of your deceased ex-husband’s pension, said Jason Marx, chair of the Tax & Estate Planning and Elder Law & Special Needs Planning groups at Curcio Mirzaian Sirot in Roseland.

“Clearly, if you were the designated beneficiary, the union would have to provide you with the appropriate benefits under the pension plan,” he said.

Perhaps you could speak to his children if they are willing to share whatever information they may have.

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This story was originally published on April 30, 2021. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.