Life Events - Beneficiary

Take care of the people who matter most.

It is important to update your beneficiary designations whenever your circumstances change. Before you submit your beneficiary designation, check with your financial advisor, custodian, or attorney to determine whether it will produce the results that you desire. Keep a copy of all beneficiary designations and review them periodically. You may change your beneficiary designations at any time.

There are separate beneficiary designations for each plan and account.

It is important to note that there are separate beneficiary designations for the U-M group life insurance plan, the TIAA-CREF retirement savings plan, and the Fidelity retirement savings plan. You must complete a separate beneficiary designation for each plan in which you are enrolled. If you have money in both TIAA-CREF and Fidelity retirement accounts, you must designate beneficiaries for each account.

How to Change Your Beneficiary Designations

Group Life Insurance — Administered by Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (MetLife)

MetLife's system allows you to view your beneficiary designations or make updates at any time. Previously-designated beneficiary information is still retained at the U-M Benefits Office, however it was not transferred to the MetLife website. If you wish to update your beneficiary or designate a new beneficiary you can do so on the MetLife website following the instructions below, or complete and submit the beneficiary designation form to MetLife.  You will not see your beneficiary designation on the MetLife website until you have completed the online form.  Once you have designated your beneficiary on the MetLife website, you will be able to view or print your information at any time.  See Frequently Asked Questions and Answers for more information.

The first time you visit the MyBenefits website you will need to register to create your user name and password.

You can designate your beneficiary quickly and securely online using MetLife's MyBenefits website at:

Register on the MetLife Website

To register:

  1. Go to
  2. Enter your company name as University of Michigan and click Submit.
  3. An important page for University of Michigan will be displayed. Carefully read this important information, and then click Continue or Cancel.
  4. Click the Register Now button for first time users (registered users can enter their user name and password).
    Step 1: Enter your Name, Social Security Number (SSN) or Employee ID (your UMID) and then enter or select your Date of Birth. Enter and confirm your Email Address. (Note: To verify your identity, entering your SSN or Employee ID is required as part of this step of the enrollment process. After enrollment, you will not have to enter your SSN or Employee ID to login to the site)

    Step 2: You will be prompted to create a User Name and Password (Please make sure to write down your new User Name and Password and keep in a safe and convenient place).

    Step 3: Select three security questions and provide your answers.
  5. Read the Terms of Use and click Agree to continue. Once your registration is complete your registration will be confirmed.
  6. Click Enter MyBenefits Now to continue.

Update Your Life Insurance Beneficiaries

After you have registered on the MetLife/MyBenefits website, follow these steps to update your beneficiary information:

  1. Go to
  2. Log in using the user name and password you created during registration
  3. Click Life Insurance – Group Term Life under the Products & Services tab
  4. Click Add/Update Beneficiaries Follow the steps to designate a beneficiary for your life insurance. For problems or questions with registration please call 877-963-8932 (877-9METWEB) for MetLife Web Technical Support.

TIAA-CREF Retirement Savings Plan

  1. Log into your TIAA-CREF account at
  2. Confirm or update your beneficiaries and the percentages of your benefits you want each to have
  3. Review and confirm your election.

You will receive a confirmation of your beneficiary election and you can change it at any time. You can also change your beneficiaries with the help of a TIAA-CREF financial consultant. Call 800-842-2252 Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (EST) or Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (EST).

Fidelity Retirement Savings Plan

To make or update your beneficiary designations for the Basic Retirement Savings Plan, SRA, and/or 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan, log on to Fidelity NetBenefits at at the link below:

First-time visitors to the Fidelity NetBenefits site will need to first register on the site by clicking the Register link at the top of the page. Follow the instructions for creating your Customer ID and PIN.

Click the Your Profile tab, then select Beneficiaries. After you make your elections, you will immediately be able to view your beneficiary information online. This will supersede any prior beneficiary election form you have submitted.

If you have questions, contact a Fidelity Retirement Services Specialists by calling 800-343-0860, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to midnight, Eastern time.


If you have any questions, you may call the SSC Contact Center at 5-2000 from the Ann Arbor campus, 734-615-2000 locally, or 866-647-7657 toll free, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Service Center representatives cannot provide legal advice.