Birth or Adoption

Overview

Birth or Adoption

Congratulations on the addition to your family!  Now it’s time to review your:

  • Beneficiary designations
  • Plan Handbook for what benefits are payable in the event of your death. Click here for Plan information.

In addition, the birth of a child may affect some ERS retirees who chose Option 5 – Survivor Benefits at retirement.

If you chose either Option 5A (100% survivor benefit) or 5B (50% survivor benefit) at retirement, your benefit may be automatically or optionally changed if predeceased by their beneficiary.

  • For a retiree who is predeceased by a beneficiary spouse, you have the option of changing your benefit payment to the Maximum Plan Benefit amount.
  • If you do not remarry, your benefit will remain at this new amount for your lifetime, and no further benefits will be payable upon your death. If you do remarry, you must wait until the earlier of (a) one year of marriage, or (b) the birth of a child of that marriage. At that point, you may reelect your original option with your new spouse as your sole beneficiary. You may alternatively keep your Maximum Plan Option if you wish.
  • For a retiree who is predeceased by a beneficiary dependent child, your benefit will change to the Maximum Plan Benefit amount, effective the month following the death.
  • If you are not married and do not (re)marry, your benefit will remain at this new amount for your lifetime, and no further benefits will be payable upon your death. If you do (re)marry, you must wait until the earlier of (a) one year of marriage, or (b) the birth of a child of that marriage. At that point, you may reelect your original option with your new spouse as your sole beneficiary. You may alternatively keep your Maximum Plan Option if you wish.

Additional financial considerations for members:

  • Live within your financial means:
    • Reduce your spending habits. Little changes can add up to big savings!
    • Review & shop around for expenses such as: utilities, home or car insurance policies, internet and cable. 
    • With future pay raises or a bonus, increase your retirement savings through Peach State Reserves (PSR) contributions.
  • Increase your life insurance to cover the new dependant
  • The costs of college continues to exceed inflation rates. Start a college fund (such as a 529 plan, which grows tax free for education) for each child.
  • Save for an emergency: 8 months of expenses
  • Credit card debt:
    • Pay on time and always pay at least minimum balance.
    • Pay off highest interest card first and then move on to the next.
    • Do you know your credit score? Check your free credit report yearly for accuracy.
  • Cyber security protection for your information and access points:
    • Giving out personal information
    • Passwords
    • Secure WIFI
    • Build a cash reserve savings account for emergency expenses. 
  • Four must-have documents:
  1. Will
  2. Revocable living trust
  3. Durable power of attorney for finances
  4. Durable power of attorney for healthcare