Asked on 14 Jan 2020
If a person passes away without nominating another individual to receive his/her CPF, what happens to the money? Does it get claimed by the government? Does it goes to the spouse?
The CPF savings will be distributed by the Public Trustee’s Office (PTO) to the legally entitled beneficiaries according to existing intestacy or Muslim inheritance laws. A fee is charged for the distribution of unnominated CPF savings.
Do note that CPF savings cannot be distributed via a will as they do not form part of the estate.
The 9 rules are as follows: https://sso.agc.gov.sg/Act/ISA1967
Please ensure a nomination is made if this is of concern for you (or whoever you are asking for). It only takes a few moments to do so.
If a person passes away without a valid CPF Nomination, the monies will be distributed according to the Intestate Succession Act in Singapore. Here are the 9 rules of distribution: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/intestate-succession-act-singapore/
Under Rule 1, the spouse will receive the monies if he or she is the only surviving beneficiary.
Under Rule 9, the government shall be entitled to the estate if Rule 1 to Rule 8 are defaulted.
In order to prevent unintended beneficiaries, I will always recommend my clients to set up a CPF Nomination: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/what-is-cpf-nomination-singapore/
To this end, there are three types of CPF Nomination:
CPF Cash Nomination: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/cpf-cash-nomination-scheme-singapore-a-step-by-step-guide/
CPF Enhanced Nomination Scheme (ENS): https://www.blog.pzl.sg/cpf-enhanced-nomination-scheme-ens-singapore
CPF Special Needs Savings Scheme (SNSS): https://www.blog.pzl.sg/cpf-special-needs-savings-scheme-snss-nomination-singapore
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