Skip to main content

Postdoctoral Fellows


Life insurance

Ryerson-paid Basic Life Insurance is an automatic benefit for all post-doctoral fellows with benefits.


You are eligible for life insurance as long as you are an active post-doctoral fellow at Ryerson University.

When will my coverage begin?

Your coverage begins on your date of hire.

Can my family be insured for some benefits?

No, your spouse and your children are not eligible for life insurance coverage.

What is covered?

The Ryerson plan provides $25,000 of coverage which is paid in a lump sum to your beneficiary if you die while employed by Ryerson.

What is the cost for the Basic Life Insurance Plan?

There are no employee-paid premiums. Ryerson pays for your basic life insurance coverage.

How do taxes apply to the Basic Life Insurance Plan?

The premium that Ryerson pays for your coverage is considered a taxable benefit for income tax purposes. The value of this benefit will appear on your T4 slip.

How do I enroll?

The life insurance plan is automatic and does not require your enrolment. The only action required on your end is to name a beneficiary who will receive the death benefit from the plan(s) if you die. 

Who will receive my life insurance benefits?

Your chosen beneficiary(ies) will receive your benefit.

How do I name or change a beneficiary?

You can name or change your beneficiary by filling out section 6A: Beneficiary Nomination of the Sun Life Group Benefits Enrolment form (PDF).

If you wish to name more than one beneficiary, you may do so, but you must indicate the percentage of the benefit that you want each beneficiary to receive and the percentages must add to 100%.

You may also elect to fill out section 6B: Appointing Contingent Beneficiaries to receive your benefits in the event that those named in section 6A are not alive at the time of your death.

You may change your beneficiary at any time by contacting Ryerson HR Pension and Benefits.

Note: If you do not nominate a beneficiary, the proceeds will be paid to your estate and therefore may be subject to estate taxes and creditors.

When does my coverage end?

Your Basic Life Insurance coverage remains in effect until the earliest of the following dates:

  • the date your employment with Ryerson ends (at the end of the statutory notice period); or
  • the date the policy terminates; or
  • the date you change employment within Ryerson if this benefit plan is not offered under your new employment category.

Are my survivors eligible for other benefits in addition to my life insurance?

In the event of your death, your estate will receive a payment equal to one month of your earnings.

In addition to Ryerson-sponsored life insurance benefits, your survivors may be entitled to payments from various government departments:

  • If you have contributed to the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) for the required period, CPP may pay a lump-sum death benefit, together with a continuing monthly income for your spouse and/or children.
  • If you die as the result of a work-related injury or illness, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board may pay a lump sum and/or a monthly income benefit for your spouse and/or children.

Exclusions and conditions

Do I remain covered while on vacation or on leave?

You remain covered under life insurance

  • during a scheduled paid vacation;
  • during a statutory maternity/parental leave;
  • during the statutory period of notice required on termination of employment;
  • for up to two years of an approved secondment (or longer, if approved by Sun Life Financial); and
  • for up to one year of an approved leave for reasons other than illness and other than those listed above (or longer, if approved by Sun Life Financial).

While you are absent from work due to illness and in receipt of Long Term Disability (LTD) benefits, coverage continues under the basic life plan.

Making Claims

What is the process for submitting a claim for life insurance?

In the event of your death, your beneficiary(ies) should contact Ryerson HR Pension and Benefits so that they can provide the necessary forms and instructions.

If I leave Ryerson, can I continue my life insurance coverage?

If you choose, you may convert your life insurance coverage to an individual policy. You must apply within 31 days of your termination date to select this option.

The maximum coverage will be the benefit amount in effect before you left Ryerson, or $200,000, whichever is less. Your premium will be based on Sun Life Financial’s rates for your class of risk, your age, and the type of policy you select. A health questionnaire will not be required.

For details, please contact SunLife at 1-800-361-6212.

Ryerson reserves the right, at any time, to amend, change or discontinue any benefit coverage. If there is a question about coverage referred to in any portion of this benefits communication, the master contract from the insurer is the governing document.