Death of a parent of a minor child

Following the death of a parent of a minor child, Retraite Québec is one of the organizations that should be contacted.

The Family Allowance

  • The Directeur de l'état civil informs us automatically of the death of a parent or a spouse.
  • If the deceased was receiving payments for the Family Allowance or the Supplement for Handicapped Children, those payments will stop. Therefore, if:
    • a child's care was shared with another person, that person must contact Retraite Québec in order to receive the amounts in his or her name.
    • a new caregiver is appointed to the child, that person must file a new Application for Family Allowance.
  • If a beneficiary's spouse dies, the Family Allowance 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.

Survivors' benefits

If a deceased person contributed sufficiently to the Québec Pension Plan, his or her family can qualify for survivors' benefits of 3 types:

Orphan's pension

  • 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, we must define the child's relationship to the deceased.
  • Good to know...

    We have 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 under the Québec Pension Plan is payable as of the month following the death. The maximum retroactive period is 12 months.  
  • In 2023, the amount of the orphan's pension under the Québec Pension Plan is $281.72 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 Under the Québec Pension Plan.
  • If the child already receives an orphan's pension under the Québec Pension Plan and his or her second parent dies, only one orphan's pension will be paid.

Death benefit

  • The death benefit under the Québec Pension Plan, which is a maximum of $2500, is paid on a priority basis to the person or charitable organization that paid the funeral expenses, provided an application is filed with us 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 Under the Québec Pension Plan.

Surviving spouse's pension

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