5. Apply for other claims or benefits

We're not married. What happens to my partner's property if they die?
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5. Apply for other claims or benefits

Canada Pension Plan benefits

The Canada Pension Plan (CPP) is a type of pension that is paid into by most workers and employers. If you were living together with your partner for at least one year when your partner died, you may qualify for different types of CPP benefits after your partner dies:

  • You can apply for a CPP survivor's pension.
  • You can apply for a death benefit. This is a one-time payment to help pay funeral and other expenses. It goes to the person or people who pay those expenses. This might be the person who administers the estate, the surviving partner, or next of kin.
  • You can apply for an Allowance for the Survivor. This is a monthly payment to low income people who are aged 60 to 64. There are some other rules about who can get this benefit.
  • You can apply for international benefits if you or your married partner lived outside of Canada at any point in time. The rules about who can get this benefit depend on which country you or your partner lived in and how long you lived there.

Support

You can also make a claim in court against your partner's estate for support if your partner didn't leave you or your children with proper financial support. This type of claim is made against your partner's estate. It is called a "dependant’s support claim".

This is not the usual family law court application for spousal support. There are also time limits on when to apply.

You can talk to a lawyer with family law and estate law experience if you want to make this type of claim.

If you can't afford to hire a lawyer for your whole case, some lawyers provide "unbundled services" or "limited scope retainer" services. This means you pay them to help you with part of your case.

If you can't afford to hire a lawyer, you may be able to find legal help in other places.

Other benefits

Your partner may have an employment benefits plan that offers life insurance or other accidental death benefits.

You may also be entitled to other payments depending on how your partner died.

You may be able apply for compensation if your partner was the victim of a violent criminal act. To find out more, read the question"I'm a victim of crime. Can I get financial help for expenses related to the crime?" or contact your local VQRP+ service delivery organization.

You can apply for benefits if your partner was killed on the job. To find out more, visit the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) website or call the WSIB at 1-800-387-0750 or 416-344-1000 in the Toronto area.

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Government of Canada
Reviewed: July 31, 2017

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