Surviving spouse's pension

In the event of the death of a beneficiary, a surviving spouse’s pension is payable if:

  • the marriage took place at least one year before the end of the member’s contract, or
  • the marriage took place less than one year before the end of the member’s contract and lasted for at least five years, or
  • the entitlement has been procured (Article II 5.09)

If the beneficiary gets married on or after the retirement date, the surviving spouse is not entitled to a surviving spouse’s pension unless the beneficiary acquires the right by submitting a request within 180 days of the date of the marriage. If the beneficiary wishes to procure this entitlement, a premium is deducted from the beneficiary’s monthly pension from the first day of the month of the marriage, until:

  • the last day of the month of the beneficiary’s death, or
  • the date of divorce, or
  • the last day of the month of the spouse’s death, should it occur before that of the beneficiary

The surviving spouse’s pension is payable from the first day of the month following the beneficiary’s death and until the death/remarriage of the spouse.

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The pension is equal to 55% of the basic pension of the deceased beneficiary.

An allowance, called a “fixed sum”, is added to the amount above.

The total amount of the pension for the surviving spouse cannot exceed the total benefits paid by the Fund to the deceased beneficiary.

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Benefits are paid monthly in Swiss francs into a personal bank account in Switzerland between 6 and 8 of the month.


Where can I find the Swiss franc/Euro exchange rate used in my declaration of income?

The exchange rate is published by the tax office in April and communicated in the CERN Bulletin.

I would like to fill gaps in my pension during my career. How can I do this?
  • Transfer from another pension scheme: the CERN Pension Fund accepts transfers from pension schemes in which provision is made for contributions by the employer. Please contact your previous pension scheme to ensure that a transfer is permitted.
  • Purchase using own funds: if you have already accrued five years of service, you have the option to buy added periods of membership with your own funds. This type of purchase is calculated according to rates defined in chapter III of the Fund’s Regulations and your reference salary at the time of the request.