Pensions Death in Service Benefits – can they be disputed?

Probate Question: Death in Service Benefits from Pensions.

Q: My sister was living with her partner for four years.  Last year my sister appointed him as Next Of Kin on paperwork connected with her work death in service benefits. Now my sister has died, and her pension death in service benefit is going to be paid to her so called next of kin. I must say that my sister and I had to pay for the funeral of my late sister with no financial help from her partner.

Please can you tell me if we can contest his Next Of Kin ?

Many thanks

A: Pension Death in Service Benefits

I imagine this is to do with the Pension Death in Service Benefit from her employer. What happens is that the firm offer an employee the option to nominate who should receive such benefits if they die in service, and your sister must have done so, which means that the Trustees of the scheme are most likely to do what she requested, though they are not bound to do so and may sympathetically entertain a request to deduct the funeral expenses, provided they get that before they have paid out.

In this case, the payment of the benefit is usually at the discretion of the trustees of the scheme, who will generally follow the wishes of the deceased.

But that doesn’t stop you raising your concerns with them – but you would need to do so urgently.

You don’t say whether her left a Will? Normally that would contain a clause which made sure the funeral was paid for from his estate.

If there was no Will, then an unmarried partner would get nothing apart from joint property automatically.  The rest would go to spouse (if any), then children (if any) then parents (if any) then siblings. For more details of the Rules of Intestacy, just click on the link above which will take you too a Government site which explains how the Rules operate.

Hope that helps.


Stephen Pett Contact The Probate Department Ltd

Pensions Death in Service Benefits