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Life Changes


The Retirement Office must have your and your beneficiary’s current mailing address for the mailing of information and tax documents. If there is a change of address, the Retirement Office must be given written notice promptly, and this notice must be signed by the individual receiving the allowance.

Click here to download an Address Change form.


Your beneficiary is the person or people who receive any benefits payable from the retirement plan in the event of your death. A beneficiary can be a surviving spouse, minor child(ren) or any other person having an insurable interest in the life of the member. An insurable interest is defined in Insurance Code section 10110 as follows:

“Every person has an insurable interest in the life and health of:
(a) Himself,
(b) Any person on whom he depends wholly or in part for education or support,
(c) Any person under a legal obligation to him for the payment of money or
respecting property or services, of which death or illness might delay or prevent the performance,
(d) Any person upon whose life any estate or interest vested in him depends.”

You must designate a beneficiary when you become a Retirement System member. If you have a spouse or eligible domestic partner, that person is your beneficiary under community property laws in California. In the event that someone other than a spouse is a designated beneficiary, the law may require that you obtain your spouse’s/domestic partner’s written, notarized consent and waiver of rights.

It is important that you keep your beneficiary designation up to date. If you die and have no surviving spouse, domestic partner, or beneficiary, any benefits owed are paid to your estate. A trust is not a person and does not have an insurable interest, and therefore is not eligible for a continuance or survivorship.

To designate a beneficiary, submit a Beneficiary Designation Form to the Retirement office.


SBCERS  has developed the guidelines linked below to assist members undergoing dissolution of a marriage or domestic partnership. There may be unique circumstances that are not discussed in these guidelines. Members and their spouses are encouraged to contact an SBCERS member services representative should these guidelines not address their questions or concerns.

Guidelines to Legal Separation and Dissolution of Marriage


It is important that SBCERS has the most recent information in your file. If your name has changed, please submit a Notice of Name Change.


You may designate an “Attorney-In-Fact” to transact all retirement matters relating to the Santa Barbara County Employees’ Retirement System. It authorizes the person you designate to handle your retirement affairs such as filing applications, making benefit elections, designating beneficiaries, and
endorsing warrants.

This document creates a durable power of attorney which continues after you, the principal, become incapacitated or otherwise unable to handle your own affairs. This Special Durable Power of Attorney form can only be used for SBCERS retirement matters. Do not complete this form if you want this power of attorney to terminate when you become incapacitated.

SBCERS Special Durable Power of Attorney Form


After you retire, you may not be paid for services performed for the County except:

  • As a juror,
  • As an election officer,
  • As an elected county official,
  • As a member of the Retirement Board,
  • As an independent contractor, or
  • In a temporary capacity not to exceed 120 days or 960 hours in a fiscal year.

Working for an SBCERS Employer After Retirement as Extra-Help, Contractor on Payroll (COP), and/or Independent Contractor

Working for the County of Santa Barbara or another SBCERS employer while retired from SBCERS is subject to rules and restrictions, even if done in a different capacity from the member’s original occupation. Please review the Guidelines for Retirees Working for SBCERS Employers as Extra-Help, Contractor on Payroll, and Independent Contractor here.

To confirm eligibility for post-retirement Extra-Help/Contractor on Payroll/Independent Contractor employment with an SBCERS employer, the Hiring Department and the Candidate (Retiree) should complete the Certification for Post-Retirement Employment Form and send to HR and SBCERS for approval.

Guidelines for Retirees Working EXH, COP, or Independent Contractor at SBCERS Plan SponsorCertification for Retirees Working EXH, COP, or Independent Contractor at SBCERS Plan SponsorRequest for Extension for Retirees Working EXH, COP, or Independent Contractor at SBCERS Plan Sponsor

Working for Non-SBCERS Employers
After your service retirement you may work in any occupation or employment for an employer other than one of SBCERS’ participating employers and there is no impact on your benefit. If you are receiving a pension from another governmental plan, such as CalPERS or Social Security, please contact that plan administrator to find out how working after retirement may affect your situation.

Reinstatement from Retirement
If you are considering returning to permanent employment with an SBCERS employer to earn additional service credit toward a subsequent retirement, please contact Member Services. Before you make the decision to reinstate you may wish to contact your prospective employer to discuss any potential impacts on your retiree healthcare coverage or subsidy.