What can I do to ensure I get the full amount of benefits coming to me when I retire?
Each year you receive an annual statement that shows all of the hours reported on your behalf. You should compare your check stubs each year to this annual statement to verify that all hours you worked have been reported. If hours have not been reported correctly, you should send copies of your check stubs to the Administration Office so that we can bill your employer for the correct hours. This comparison can also be done each month via the Trust website.
What are my responsibilities regarding my pension benefits?
You are required to notify the Administration Office of the following:
- Birth Date
- Address changes
- Name changes
- Marital Status changes (marriage, divorce, death of spouse)
- Beneficiary changes
Can I add money to my pension Plan?
Generally, Taft-Hartley Defined Benefit Plans are funded through employer contributions only. Your employer pays contributions for every hour you work (per your collective bargaining agreement) to finance the Plan. No contributions are required by, or permitted from, you.
(See page 11 of the Pension Plan Booklet.)
When I become deceased, will my spouse automatically get my pension benefits?
- Pre-Retirement Death benefits are generally dependent upon your age and Vesting Credits and in some cases if you were actively employed at the time of death.
- If you retired prior to your death, any Death benefits will be paid based upon the type of benefit you elected at your retirement.
- Contact the Administration Office for more details on your death benefits.
(See page 26 of the Pension Plan Booklet)
Can I withdraw my pension benefits if I have a financial hardship?
Pension benefits are only payable once you reach the age and service requirements and retire. They are generally a monthly benefit payable for your lifetime.
I am planning on retiring in the next few years. How early should I apply for my retirement?
You can apply up to a maximum of 6 months in advance of your retirement date. However, generally we recommend applying 60 days in advance.
What types of options are available to me at retirement?
Normally if you are married at retirement, you will be offered Spouse Options. This form of payment is reduced according to both you and your spouse’s age and provides you a lifetime benefit and your spouse a lifetime benefit following your death.
(See page 19 of the Pension Plan Booklet)
What types of documents may I need to submit when I apply for retirement?
Depending on your marital status, some or all of the following will be required:
- Birth Certificate (for both you and your spouse)
- Marriage Certificate(s)
- Name change document(s)
- Divorce Decree(s)
- Qualified Domestic Relations Order(s)
What is the Plan Year?
The Plan Year is June 1 through May 31.
(See page 38 of the Pension Plan Booklet.)
How many hours must I work in a Plan Year (June 1 through May 31) to earn a year of Service?
870 Hours of Service
(See page 11 of the Pension Plan Booklet)
What are the requirements for a Special Early Retirement?
- Must be age 55 or over, but before age 65
- 10 or more years of Credited Service with either 2 years of Credited Future Service or 3,000 Covered Hours of Employment AND
- Have at least 30,000 Covered Hours of Employment (including Certain Reciprocal Hours, see page 21); AND
- Have at least 3 years of Credited Future Service during the Preceding 5 Plan Years
(See page 16 of the Pension Plan Booklet)