Current beneficiary designations on file are necessary to ensure that certain University benefits are paid promptly to the person(s) you wish. A beneficiary is a person or legal entity that one designates to collect the proceeds from an estate, trust, retirement account, life insurance policy, or transfer on death accounts. Named beneficiaries can generally supersede directives listed in a will for certain assets. Major life events or family status changes naturally trigger beneficiary updates (marriage, divorce, birth, adoption, death, domestic partner registration, will or estate plan changes, 401(k) or IRA rollovers, etc.). It is also necessary to contact your retirement and union welfare fund plans directly to verify and update the beneficiaries on those accounts.