DEFINITION of 'Single-Life Payout '
One of two payout option methods an employer uses to distribute retirement benefits. At retirement, a retiree has the choice of either a single-life payout or a joint-life payout. A single-life payout means only the employee will be receiving the payments for the rest of his/her life, but the payments stop upon his/her death.
BREAKING DOWN 'Single-Life Payout '
In contrast to the single-life payout option, a retiree can also choose a joint-life payout option that will continue payments after the retiree's death to someone else, such as a spouse. Some plans restrict the survivor benefits to immediate family members. Typically, the periodic payment from a joint-life payout option will be less than the amount in a single life payout because it continues after death.