Pension - Applying for Benefits
In addition to satisfying the age and service requirements for a pension, you must file an application form obtained from the Administrative Office before any benefits become payable from the Plan. This is also true of your spouse who may be entitled to survivor benefits upon your death.
Upon request, an application, with instructions for completing it, will be mailed to you. You will also receive information explaining your right to defer payment of your pension to a later date. This is strictly for your information and is not intended to suggest that you should or should not delay payment of your pension.
Be sure to send a completed application, and any other documents needed (such as proof of age and/or marriage), to the Administrative Office so that it arrives at least 60 days before the month in which you want your pension to start.
Your application will not be considered complete until all the information required by that application is received by the Administrative Office. Your claim will be considered filed when your application is received by the Administrative Office, without regard to whether all information necessary to make a benefit determination accompanies your application. If all necessary information does not accompany your application, the Administrative Office will notify you, in writing, of the:
- Standards on which entitlement to benefits is based;
- Unresolved issues that prevent a decision on the claim; and
- Additional information needed to resolve those issues.
If you fail to provide the requested information or documentation within 180 days of the Plan’s request, your application will be cancelled.
Annuity Starting Date
Your Annuity Starting Date is the effective date of your pension benefit. It is based on you fulfilling all of the conditions to receive your pension and is the later of:
- The first day of the month after you have filed your application for benefits; or
- 30 days after the Administrative Office provides you with information concerning the Plan’s available payment forms.
Your Annuity Starting Date may occur sooner than the 30 days described above under the following circumstances:
- The actuarial present value of your benefit is $1,000 or less; or
- You and your spouse consent in writing to the commencement of payments before the end of the 30-day period and the actual distribution begins more than 7 days after the written explanation has been provided to you and your spouse.
- Your Annuity Starting Date cannot be later than your Required Beginning Date.
- Your benefit was previously paid because of an election after your Normal Retirement Age.
Retroactive Annuity Starting Date
Based on the timing of your filed application and/or when information necessary to calculate when your pension becomes available, it may not be possible to provide you with a written explanation of your available payment forms prior your earliest possible Annuity Starting Date. Under these circumstances, you may elect a Retroactive Annuity Starting Date or a later prospective Annuity Starting Date.
If you elect a Retroactive Annuity Starting Date, the following will apply:
- Your pension will be subject to your situation and the terms and conditions of the Plan in effect on your Retroactive Annuity Starting Date.
- Your initial payment will consist of a one-time lump sum payment to cover the number of months between your Retroactive Annuity Starting Date and when your first check is issued. The payment will include interest.
- Thereafter, the amount of your pension will be that calculated as of your Retroactive Annuity Starting Date.
- Amounts payable under the Retroactive Annuity Starting Date provisions of the Plan are subject to adjustment for any elected optional payment form.
- If you are married, the election of a Retroactive Annuity Starting Date requires the consent of your spouse.
If you instead elect a prospective Annuity Starting Date, the following will apply:
- In lieu of the retroactive lump sum payment, your pension will be subject to your situation and the terms and conditions of the Plan in effect on your prospective Annuity Starting Date and will be paid going forward as of your prospective Annuity Starting Date.
- Amounts payable are subject to adjustment for any elected optional payment form.
- Election of a prospective Annuity Starting Date does not by itself require spousal consent, although the election of a specific payment form will require written consent.
Example: You have an accrued benefit of $1,000.00, are unmarried and file an application for retirement on May 31, 2018 with a requested June 1, 2018 Annuity Starting Date. On that date, you are age 64 years and 9 months old. You receive payment form information sometime after that date. Due to the time needed to process your application, your first check will be released on September 1, 2018. Under these circumstances, you have the following two options:
- Waive the 30-day waiting period and elect a June 1, 2018 Retroactive Annuity Starting Date. On that date, you are eligible for an Early Retirement Pension based on you being age 64 years and 9 months old and your $1,000 accrued benefit is reduced to $976.00. Your September 1, 2018 benefit will consist of a lump sum covering the three-month period of June, July and August at $976.00 each or $2,928.00 plus $19.52 in interest for a one-time payment of $2,947.52. Effective September 1, 2018 and thereafter, you will receive $976.00 per month.
- Elect a prospective September 1, 2018 Annuity Starting Date. On that date, you are age 65 and eligible for a Regular Pension with no early retirement reduction. Therefore, while you receive no retroactive payment, beginning September 1, 2018, you begin receiving $1,000.00 per month for the rest of your life.