You become a participant as of your first day of covered employment provided you complete at least 22 weeks of covered employment within the 12 month period beginning on the first day of your covered employment. If you do not complete 22 weeks of covered employment within such initial 12 month period beginning on the first day of covered employment, you will become a participant on January 1st of any subsequent Plan year in which you complete at least 22 weeks of covered employment.
HIGHLIGHTS OF YOUR PENSION BENEFITS
How The Pension Trust Fund Works
- Your local union and your employer negotiate contributions through a bargaining process.
- Contributions made by your employer are placed in the trust fund.
- Union and employer trustees manage the money in the trust fund on your behalf.
- The money is invested and used to pay pension benefits.
Becoming A Participant
- Determines your right to a pension.
- Generally, you earn one year of vesting service for each calendar year (January 1 – December 31) in which you complete at least 22 weeks of covered employment. You become vested once you complete five years of vesting service, provided you earn at least one year of vesting service after December 31, 1996 or work at least one hour in covered employment after December 31, 1998.
Benefit Service (Both Past and Future)…
- Determines the amount of your pension. Benefit service is also used to determine your eligibility for a service pension and a disability pension.
- Generally, you earn one year of future benefit service for each calendar year in which you complete at least 50 weeks of covered employment. You may earn a partial year of future benefit service if you complete at least 22 weeks but less than 50 weeks of covered employment. Past benefit service is any benefit service you earned prior to the date covered employment commenced and that is authorized by the Trustees.
Receiving A Pension
When You Retire
- A normal pension can be taken at age 65 or later.
- An early pension can be taken between the ages of 57 and 65 if you have 10 or more years of vesting service. Your pension will be reduced if you receive it before age 65.
- In general, you become eligible for a service pension after you have earned 25 or more years of future benefit service.
- You are eligible for a deferred vested pension after you have earned at least five years of vesting service provided you earn at least one year of vesting service after December 31, 1996 or work at least one hour in covered employment after December 31, 1998 (if you left covered employment before January 1, 1997, eligibility for a deferred pension was different, contact the Fund Office for more information). A deferred vested pension may be taken in some cases as early as age 57.
- If you become totally and permanently disabled, you may qualify for a disability pension. To be eligible for this benefit, you must have at least 15 years of benefit service before your disability begins and your disability must continue for at least 26 weeks after your covered employment ends.
- A reciprocal pension pays a pension to participants whose service is not sufficient to make them eligible for a pension benefit because his or her service was divided between reciprocal plans or who would receive a greater benefit under a reciprocal pension than under a pension based on his or her service with this Plan alone. To be eligible for a reciprocal pension, the participant must meet the requirements for a reciprocal pension under this Plan and the reciprocal plan(s).
Choosing How Your Pension Is Paid
- If you are unmarried, your pension is generally paid as a life only pension.
- The following forms of payment are available to a married participant:
- Life only pension (if you have less than 20 years of benefit service);
- 50% joint and survivor pension;
- 50% joint and survivor pension with pop-up;
- 75% joint and survivor pension with pop-up;
- 100% joint and survivor pension with pop-up; or
- Life only with a post-retirement death benefit (not available for deferred vested, normal, or early pensions if you have less than 20 years of benefit service). This option is also available to unmarried participants with dependent children who have at least 20 years of benefit service.
- Depending on the payment option you choose, you may need your spouse’s consent.
- If the total value of your benefit is $5,000 or less, it may, upon approval of the Trustees, be paid to you in one lump sum payment.
If You Die
- If you die before beginning your pension and you have at least five years of vesting service, your spouse may be eligible to receive a monthly pension.
- If you die after beginning your pension, depending on the form of payment you elected when your pension payments started, your spouse or dependent child(ren) may receive a monthly pension.
- Your spouse or dependent(s) may be eligible to receive a lump sum death benefit if:
- you retired with at least 20 years of benefit service and were eligible to receive a normal pension; or
- you retired with at least 10 years of benefit service and were eligible to receive an early pension; or
- you retired with at least 15 years of benefit service and were eligible to receive a disability pension; or
- you retired with at least 25 years of future benefit service and were eligible to receive a service pension; or
- at the time of your death, you had not yet retired but had at least 20 years of benefit service and were eligible to receive a pension benefit from the Plan.
Summary Of Benefits
Your Pension Plan benefit can be a significant part of your retirement income. The amount of your pension benefit is based on the number of years you work for an employer who makes contributions on your behalf to the Plan. Generally, the longer you work for a contributing employer, the greater your pension. The Pension Plan offers you:
- pensions at various retirement ages;
- several payment options;
- disability benefits; and
- death benefits.