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Indiana Public Retirement System

Indiana Public Retirement System (INPRS) > My Fund > Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) FAQs Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) FAQs

Would my same-sex partner be eligible for my defined benefit pension?

Yes. The defined benefit pension is a state statute driven benefit. The statutes for PERF and TRF concerning defined benefit options allow a member to select anyone to be their beneficiary.  This means your same-sex partner would be eligible for benefits under Options 10, 30, 40, 50, 61 and 71 for PERF. Your same-sex partner would be eligible for benefits under Options A1, A2, A3, B1, B2 and B3 for TRF.

Would my same-sex partner be eligible for my Annuity Savings Account (ASA)?

Yes. The ASA is a state statute driven benefit. The statutes for PERF and TRF concerning the ASA options allow a member to select anyone to be their beneficiary.  Therefore, you may leave your ASA to whomever you choose. This could be a spouse, a same-sex partner, child, estate, trust, etc.

I was legally married in another state that recognizes same-sex marriage. We moved to Indiana. Would my partner be eligible to receive my pension benefit and ASA?

Yes. The defined benefit pension is a state statute driven benefit. The statutes for PERF and TRF concerning defined benefit options allow a member to select anyone to be their beneficiary. This means your same-sex partner would be eligible for benefits under Options 10, 30, 40, 50, 61 and 71 for PERF. Your same-sex partner would be eligible for benefits under Options A1, A2, A3, B1, B2 and B3 for TRF.

The ASA is a state statute driven benefit. The statutes for PERF and TRF concerning the ASA options allow a member to select anyone to be their beneficiary. Therefore, you may leave your ASA to whomever you choose. This could be a spouse, a same-sex partner, child, estate, trust, etc.

Would my same-sex partner be eligible to receive my Rollover Savings Account (RSA)?

Yes. Beneficiaries may be named for your RSA independently of those listed on your ASA. The RSA is created by state statute but is also a federally recognized benefit. That means, it is governed by the regulations of the federal government. Therefore, you may leave your RSA to whomever you choose. This could be a spouse, a same-sex partner, child, estate, trust, etc.

My same-sex partner recently passed away. I am receiving a distribution from his/her ASA. As a PERF/TRF member, can I roll that amount into an INPRS rollover account?

Yes. INPRS will accept the rollover distribution amount from your same-sex partner’s ASA.

My same-sex partner and I are getting divorced. He/she has been awarded half my pension benefit and Annuity Savings Account (ASA). How does that work?

As a governmental plan as defined in 29 U.S.C. § 1002(32), INPRS doesn’t recognize qualified domestic relations orders (QDROs). Divorce decrees should order the member, or the member’s legal beneficiary, to make payments to the ex-spouse rather than ordering INPRS to make such payments.

My same-sex partner did not take a distribution of his/her ASA and has recently passed away. Do I receive his/her ASA account dollars?

Yes. The ASA is a state statute driven benefit. The statutes for PERF and TRF concerning the ASA options allow a member to select anyone to be their beneficiary. INPRS will distribute the ASA balance to the beneficiaries on file. If you are selected as the beneficiary, you would receive the ASA account dollars.

I am a member of PERF who will be retiring soon. My unused vacation time will be converted to a 401(h) medical benefit account. Will my same-sex partner be covered under this account?

A 401(h) medical benefit account is for retiring state of Indiana employees, their spouses and eligible dependents. It can be used for the reimbursement of medical expenses. The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages.

My same-sex partner is ill and I may need to use Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) leave to care for him/her. Will my PERF or TRF employer allow me to use FMLA?

FMLA is a federally recognized benefit. That means, it is governed by the regulations of the federal government. However, FMLA regulations provide that spouse status is determined by the laws of the employee’s state of residence. Currently, the state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages.

I’m eligible to retire from my PERF-covered position, but will continue working for a few more years. If I pass away, will my same-sex partner receive a survivor benefit?

No. State statutes allow for specific dependents to receive a survivor benefit such as spouses and dependent children below the age of 18. The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages. Therefore, a same-sex partner cannot receive a survivor benefit.

I’m eligible to retire from my TRF-covered position, but will continue working for a few more years. If I pass away, will my same-sex partner receive a survivor benefit?

No. State statutes allow for specific dependents to receive a survivor benefit such as spouses and dependent children below the age of 18. The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages. Therefore, a same-sex partner cannot receive a survivor benefit.

How does the same-sex survivor benefit work for the PERF ASA Only plan?

The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages. Therefore, a same-sex partner cannot receive a survivor benefit.

I’m no longer working (out of service) in a PERF-covered position, but I’m eligible to receive retirement benefits. If I pass away, will my same-sex partner receive a survivor benefit?

No. The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages.

I’m no longer working (out of service) in a TRF-covered position, but I’m eligible to receive retirement benefits. If I pass away, will my same-sex partner receive a survivor benefit?

No. The state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages.


NOTE: Currently, the state of Indiana does not recognize same-sex marriages. There are some limitations to which the state of Indiana may be required to enforce the judgment of another state in breaching its own statutes or policy. Published content is provided for informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice. If you have further questions regarding the rights of same-sex partners, please consult legal counsel.