Death of a parent of a minor child
Following the death of a parent of a minor child, the Régie des rentes du Québec is one of the organizations that should be contacted.
- The Registrar of Civil Status informs us automatically of the death of a parent or a spouse.
- If the deceased was receiving payments for child assistance or the Supplement for Handicapped Children, those payments will stop. The child's new caregiver must make a new Application for Child Assistance Payments.
- If a beneficiary's spouse dies, the child assistance payments will be recalculated to take into account the new situation (single-parent family). You can use the simulation tool CalculAide to get an estimate of the new amounts that could be paid.
The minor children of a deceased person may be entitled to certain benefits if the deceased contributed sufficiently to the Québec Pension Plan.
If a deceased person contributed sufficiently to the Québec Pension Plan, his or her family can qualify for survivors' benefits of 3 types:
- If the deceased had children under 18 years of age, the child is entitled to an orphan's pension. The pension may be paid to the person or the organization that supports the child. The person who supports a minor child of the deceased person is entitled, if the latter contributed sufficiently to the Plan, to be paid an orphan's pension until the child turns 18. To determine whether a child is entitled to an orphan's pension, the Régie must define the child's relationship to the deceased.
Good to know...
The Régie has considered a deceased person's child to be:
- his or her minor biological or adopted child
- a minor child who was living with the deceased for at least one year, if the deceased served as mother or father to the child.
A child is not considered to be the deceased person's child if he or she was placed in foster care in that person's home and the deceased was receiving amounts for his or her care.
- The orphan's pension is payable as of the month following the death. The maximum retroactive period is 12 months.
- In 2015, the amount of the orphan's pension is 234,87 $ a month for each child. The pension is taxable and must be reported in the child's income. It is indexed every year.
- Payment stops when the child turns 18.
- The person who is caring for the child can apply for an orphan's pension by using the Application for Survivors' Benefits.
- If the child already receives an orphan's pension and his or her second parent dies, only one orphan's pension will be paid.
- The death benefit, which is a maximum of 2 500 $, is paid on a priority basis to the person or charitable organization that paid the funeral expenses, provided an application is filed with the Régie with a photocopy of the proof of payment within 60 days following the death.
- After 60 days, the death benefit can be paid to the heirs. If the heirs have renounced the estate, it can be paid to certain other persons.
- The death benefit is taxable and must be declared in the income of the estate, regardless of the name in which the cheque was made.
- To apply for a death benefit or an orphan's pension, use the Application for Survivors' Benefits.
Surviving spouse's pension
- If the deceased leaves a spouse, the latter could be entitled to a surviving spouse's pension. To qualify as a spouse, certain rules apply.
- The amount of the surviving spouse's pension can be increased where the deceased spouse was entitled to a retirement pension supplement. The supplement will be taken into account in calculating the surviving spouse's pension.
- To apply for a surviving spouse's pension, use the online Application for Survivors' Benefits.
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