Death in the Family

Whether you are a Tufts employee or a family member, contact Tufts Support Services (TSS) by email or call 617-627-7000 as soon as possible after a family member dies. TSS staff can guide you through the claims process and answer questions about resources available to you and your family. 

Accelerated Death Benefits

Tufts understands that losing a loved one or family member is a difficult time for all who are involved. An accelerated death can be even more difficult and surprising. Here are some helpful resources to assist you and your family in your time of need.

Accelerating Payment of Death Benefits due to Terminal Illness: If you become a Terminally Ill Employee while insured under the Employee Term Life Insurance provision or while your death benefit protection is being extended under the Employee Term Life Coverage provision, you may elect to have the Terminal Ill Proceeds placed under this option. That election is subject to the conditions set forth on page 19 and 20 of the Life Insurance Plan Document.

What this Means: If an individual is diagnosed with a terminal illness and has a life expectancy of 24 months or less, they are eligible to cash in up to 80% of their Basic and Optional Life (if applicable) proceeds to a combined maximum of $800,000.

If you elect this option, Prudential will pay the Terminal Illness Proceeds you place under this option in one sum when it received proof that you are a Terminally Ill Employee. If you do not want the Terminal Illness Proceeds in one sum, you may elect to have 24 equal monthly installments. The first monthly payment will be due when Prudential receives proof that you are a Terminally Ill Employee. The other payments are due on the same day of each later month. 

For more information please see pages 19 and 20 in the Life Insurance Plan Document under "Option to Accelerate Payment of Death Benefits".

Benefit Changes

Find out how a death in the family affects your benefits and, in the case of your death, what the surviving members of your family need to do to file a life insurance claim.

Counseling Services

The Employee Assistance Program offers free, confidential counseling for you, your dependents and household members. You can reach the EAP 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-800-451-1834.

Sympathy Days

You may be granted up to three days of paid leave following a death in your immediate family. This includes your spouse, qualified domestic partner, children (including stepchildren), daughter/son-in-law, mother/father-in-law, parent (including stepparent), brother or sister (including stepbrother and stepsister), brother/sister-in-law, grandparent, and grandchildren.

Additional Options

If you need additional time off, Tufts provides several options for taking time for bereavement. Contact TSS or your Human Resources Business Partner for more information.

Social Security Death Benefits

A one-time payment of $255 can be paid to the surviving spouse if he or she was living with the deceased; or, if living apart, was receiving certain Social Security benefits on the deceased's record. if there is no surviving spouse, the payment is made to a child who is eligible for benefits on the deceased's record in the month of death. More information can be found on the Social Security website.