McGill Alert / Alerte de McGill

Updated: Mon, 07/15/2024 - 16:07

Gradual reopening continues on downtown campus. See Campus Public Safety website for details.

La réouverture graduelle du campus du centre-ville se poursuit. Complément d'information : Direction de la protection et de la prévention.

Beneficiary designation

family holding hands on the beach

The life insurance benefit is paid out to your designated beneficiary in the event of your death. You can name one or more individuals to receive your basic and optional life insurance benefits, eg. spouse, estate, or family member. When designating a beneficiary, you must indicate whether the designation is revocable or irrevocable. To change your beneficiary, please contact HR Shared Services at hrhr [at]

What is the difference between revocable and irrevocable designations?

Revocable: The beneficiary you choose can be changed at any time without the permission of that individual. 

Irrevocable: The beneficiary you choose cannot be changed without the written permission of that individual, or can be changed following a divorce, or the death of the designated beneficiary. In Quebec, naming your spouse (must be a civil union) as a beneficiary automatically means that they are an irrevocable beneficiary designation, unless you specify otherwise, or divorce.

Naming a minor as a beneficiary

If a minor is designated as your beneficiary, the life insurance benefit can only be paid on behalf of the minor to a trustee or guardian for property, otherwise it will be paid into court to be held until the beneficiary has reached the age of the majority. In Quebec, the parents are considered tutors of their child.

If a minor has been designated as an irrevocable beneficiary, the policy is automatically frozen until the beneficiary has reached the age of majority. A parent or guardian cannot consent to a beneficiary change on behalf of a minor.

Who is considered to be a minor?

A person named as a beneficiary who is under the age of majority.

What is a trustee?

A person appointed by you to hold the minor's proceeds in trust until the minor reaches the age of majority.

What is a tutor?

A person who acts like a trustee. 

Important points to note:

  • You can change your designation as long as you respect the laws governing the designation of beneficiaries.
  • If designating an individual as your beneficiary, please show all given names of the beneficiary and specify their relationship to you. This will ensure there will be no difficulty in identifying the proper person in the event of your death. 
  • If naming more than one beneficiary, indicate the share (%) of the life insurance proceeds payable to each. If the respective share is not indicated, the life insurance proceeds will be paid in equal shares.
  • If naming your Estate, be sure that your will provides for the disposition of the life insurance proceeds.

What if I do not designate a beneficiary?

If you do not designate a beneficiary, your beneficiary designation will automatically default to Estate.

Important: We strongly recommend that you review your beneficiaries when a major life event occurs, such as the birth of a child or a change in your marital status (eg. divorce, death of spouse).

Beneficiary designation

To add, modify or see your designated beneficiary/beneficiaries, log into Workday with your email address and password.

Back to top