If a member dies before retiring, can the member provide for payment of a lifetime allowance to a surviving family member?

Members have the right to choose a beneficiary upon becoming a member or at any point prior to retirement (“Option D”). Option D provides a designated beneficiary with an allowance for life. However, if the member does not designate an Option D beneficiary and if his/her eligible spouse does not elect to receive a lifetime allowance, the member's accumulated deductions will be paid in a lump sum to his/her surviving beneficiaries of record and no lifetime allowance can be paid.