New common-law spouse

Important note: The definition of  “spouse” is not the same in the Desjardins Group Pension Plan (DGPP) and the Group Insurance Plan.

Desjardins Group Pension Plan (DGPP)

The definition of a spouse for the purposes of the Desjardins Group Pension Plan (DGPP) is as follows:

  • The spouse is the person who is married to or united in civil union with the member and who is not separated from bed and board from the member (legal separation).
  • If the member is neither married nor civilly united, the spouse is a person who has been living with the member in a marital relationship for at least 3 years or, in the following cases, for at least 1 year, 
    • if (at least) one child has been born or will be born of their union;
    • if they have jointly adopted at least one child during their marital relationship;
    • if one of them has adopted at least one of the other’s children during this period 
  • If no one meets any of the above definitions, the spouse is a person who the member has designated in writing to the Desjardins Group Retirement Committee, and who has been living in a marital relationship with the member for at least 1 year.
  • Finally, if no one meets any of the above definitions, the member is deemed not to have a spouse for the purposes of the DGPP. 

After having lived in a marital relationship for three years – or one year if a child is or is to be born of the union – your common-law spouse will be recognized automatically for the purposes of the DGPP. If you want your common-law spouse to be recognized after 1 year of marital relationship and less than 3 years of marital relationship, please fill the form Designation of common-law spouse and send it to Desjardins Insurance.

If you die before you retire, your spouse will receive the total value of your annuity.

Upon your retirement, this common-law spouse will have to be designated as such and will, upon your death, be entitled to an annuity equal to 60% of yours (regular plan form) or another form of survivor annuity with a different percentage chosen by you at the time you retire.

Your spouse may, however, waive this right by signing the form Waiver of Death Benefits before retirement pursuant to Section 88.1 of the Supplemental Pension Plans Act. The form will be kept with your employer and given to the Desjardins Insurance Plan manager upon your death. This waiver may be revoked at any time by the spouse, prior to the death of the participant or before the commencement of the pension payments. This waiver only concerns benefits to be paid while the participant is still active in the plan. A new form must be signed at the participant's retirement in the event the spouse still wishes to waive the benefits he would be entitled to by virtue of his status of spouse after the participant's retirement.

There will be no impact if you acquire a new common-law spouse after you retire. Your spouse is the person named as such at the time of your retirement and cannot be changed thereafter. You cannot modify or add a spouse or any other dependent person after you retire.

Group Insurance

​To find out how this life event could affect your group insurance plan, please visit My Health Is Cool 360°.

​You can also access My Health Is Cool 360° from the Desjardins Insurance secure site.