Customarily only workers and their surviving spouses can receive benefits from private defined-benefit plans. Thus, no matter how financially dependent other household members may be on the worker, they are not eligible to share in or receive survivor benefits.
ELIGIBILITY FOR DEPENDENT AND NONSPOUSE SURVIVOR PENSIONS: Policy
Dependent and nonspouse survivor benefits
People in kinship care situations and others with an insurable interest in a beneficiary should be permitted to share in or receive survivor benefits from private defined-benefit retirement plans.