Home > FAQs > About The Pension Amount

   
   

   
   

 

How long do I have to work for the Company to become fully vested in my benefit?

How much can I expect to receive from the retirement plan?

What benefit do I receive if I leave the Company before retirement?

If I retire early, how much will it reduce my benefit?

Will I receive a larger pension the more years I work? Or, if my pay falls, would I be better off to retire before my Final Average Pay drops too much?

Where did the benefit formula come from?




QUESTION: How long do I have to work for the Company to become fully vested in my benefit?


ANSWER: You will become fully vested in your accrued benefit under the Plan after you have been credited with 5 years of service in eligible bargaining unit employment. Service with the Company or members of its "Controlled Group" that is not eligible bargaining unit employment can count toward the 5 years of service requirement for vesting purposes, but will not count in determining what the amount of your benefit under the Retirement Plan will be.



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QUESTION: How much can I expect to receive from the retirement plan?


ANSWER:

There is no single answer about your potential benefit because the amount varies depending on your pay, years of service, the time period in which you earned your service, age at retirement, the type of annuity you choose to receive, and the collectively-bargained level of benefits that may apply from time to time.

To view a summary of the Basic Benefit formula, go to the Normal Retirement Summary Tab.

To see an example of a Normal Retirement payment calculation, click here.





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QUESTION: What benefit do I receive if I leave the Company before retirement?


ANSWER: The amount varies for each individual who takes a "deferred retirement" depending on their years of service (minimum of five years), pay and when benefits start. A deferred retirement uses the same calculation as a normal retirement, based on the formula in effect when you leave the Company.

Normally, a deferred retirement benefit begins at your normal retirement date. If you have been credited with 10 or more years of service in eligible bargaining unit employment and decide to begin benefits earlier, the monthly benefit will be reduced under the rules for early retirement as described below.





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QUESTION: If I retire early, how much will it reduce my benefit?


ANSWER: The reduction depends on your age at early retirement and your years of service. If you are at least age 60 with a minimum of 20 years of service in eligible bargaining unit employment*, there's no reduction from the formula amount.

If you are at least 50 with 20 years of service in eligible bargaining unit employment*, your benefit is reduced 5% a year for each year prior to age 60.

* To take advantage of these 20 years of service subsidies, you must have attained age 50 at termination of bargaining unit employment (or terminate bargaining unit employment as part of the 2001 Involuntary Separation Program) and have one Hour of Service on or after January 1, 1998.

You may qualify for a rule of 85 retirement payment if you earned at least one Hour of Service on or after December 1, 1999, and your age plus Years of Past and Future Service at the time of your termination adds up to 85 or more. There's no reduction in benefits for the rule of 85 retirement benefit.

If you are age 50 with at least 10 years of service in eligible bargaining unit employment but do not qualify for any of the above subsidies, then the reduction is as shown in the chart below:

If You Are Age...
You Will Receive This Percentage
Of A Normal Retirement Benefit...
65
100%
64
96%
63
92%
62
88%
61
74.4%
60
67.7%
59
61.7%
58
56.4%
57
51.6%
56
47.3%
55
43.5%
54
40.0%
53
36.9%
52
34.0%
51
31.4%
50
29.1%

 





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QUESTION: Will I receive a larger pension the more years I work? Or, if my pay falls, would I be better off to retire before my Final Average Pay drops too much?


ANSWER: Remember that Final Average Pay is the average pay from your 20 highest quarters of your last 40 quarters of covered employment. For most people, that is their last 20. But if your pay drops significantly, you could still work 20 more quarters without affecting your Final Average Pay - by not using the final 20 quarters. Continuing work would also add another five years of credited service which would increase your benefit. But there is no general rule; it would depend on the specifics of your situation as well as the collectively-bargained level of benefits in effect under the Retirement Plan from time to time. To help you decide what action to take, estimate your pension both ways.




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QUESTION: Where did the benefit formula come from?


ANSWER: From the inception of the Plan in 1963 until September 18, 2003, the benefit formula was determined by the Trustees. However, effective September 18, 2003, the Company and the Union agreed in collective bargaining that the benefit formula would be determined by the bargaining parties, and not by the Trustees.



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