Benefits & Executive Compensation News

Deceased Delta Employee’s Ex-Wife Loses Spousal Pension Appeal

June 29, 2020, 2:11 PM

A deceased Delta Air Lines Inc. employee’s ex-wife lost her appeal seeking benefits under the airline’s pension plan, when the the Eleventh Circuit ruled that she no longer qualified as an “automatic spousal beneficiary” under the plan’s terms.

An employee’s spouse qualifies as an automatic beneficiary under Delta’s pension plan only during the course of the marriage, the court said in a June 26 opinion. Wanda and Marvin Crowder divorced more than a year before Marvin Crowder’s 2016 death, so his ex-wife didn’t qualify as a beneficiary under the plan, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit...

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