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Are my retirement benefits guaranteed?

Can the Plan be terminated?

Can the Company ever take back money it has contributed to the Trust Fund?

Does anyone besides the Trustees oversee the Plan?




QUESTION: Are my retirement benefits guaranteed?


ANSWER: Generally, yes. If the Plan terminates, benefits are guaranteed by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC). Generally, the PBGC guarantees most vested retirement benefits and certain survivor's benefits. However, the PBGC does not guarantee all types of benefits and there is a ceiling, adjusted periodically, on the amount of monthly benefit the PBGC guarantees. For a pension plan terminating in 2004, the maximum monthly guaranteed pension benefit is $3,698.86 for a single-life annuity beginning at age 65.

The PBGC is a government corporation established under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). The PBGC established an insurance program designed to provide participants with benefits promised under their employer's defined benefit plan if that plan terminated without sufficient assets. The ABC-NABET Retirement Trust pays insurance premiums for PBGC insurance that protects your benefits.

For more information, go to the PBGC website (www.pbgc.gov) or contact the PBGC at:

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation
Technical Assistance Division
1200 K Street, N.W., Suite 930
Washington, D.C. 20005-4026
202-326-4000 (not a toll-free number)




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QUESTION: Can the Plan be terminated?


ANSWER: Yes, as long as it meets all the requirements set forth under Title IV of ERISA and the PBGC regulations. If the Plan terminates, participants would become 100% vested in their accrued benefits, to the extent funded, as of the date of termination. (Your accrued benefit is your Plan benefit earned to date expressed as an annual annuity beginning at normal retirement age.) Based on the actuarial funding assumptions used by the Plan, the Plan has sufficient assets at this time to cover all accrued benefits.




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QUESTION: Can the Company ever take back money it has contributed to the Trust Fund?


ANSWER: Only in certain circumstances with respect to mistaken contributions by the Company. By law, Plan assets must be segregated from the employer's assets and held in trust.




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QUESTION: Does anyone besides the Trustees oversee the Plan?


ANSWER: Yes. Effective September 18, 2003, the Company and the Union, through collective bargaining, and not the Trustees, have the authority to amend the Plan in any material way.

In addition, ERISA established federal reporting requirements for plan administrators. Every plan is required to have an annual audit by an independent qualified public accountant. The Plan's current auditor is Salibello & Broder LLP. The audit expresses an opinion as to the fairness of presentation of the financial statements. The audit report is filed with the Department of Labor (DOL) as part of the Plan's annual report (known as a Form 5500).

The Plan is also required to file statements with the PBGC and, upon request, copies of Summary Plan Descriptions and summaries of materials modifications with the DOL.

ERISA also requires the Plan to communicate with participants and beneficiaries on a regular basis. Certain types of information must be provided automatically and other types of information provided upon request. Among the numerous communications required to participants are Summary Plan Descriptions, summaries of plan changes (material modifications), summary annual reports, and notices involving optional types of annuities and the right to elect or reject them.




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