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Teacher Newsmagazine Volume 18, Number 7, May/June 2006

What's new from the Teachers' Pension Plan?

The Teachers’ Pension Plan (TPP) has a new direct URL—tpp.pensionsbc.ca.

Member’s Benefit Statements will be distributed via school district employers during the month of May 2006. These personalized statements provide your amount of pensionable and contributory service earned as at December 31, 2005. Be sure to review the information. Contact the employer if there are errors for salary and service. Contact the TPP, tpp@pensionsbc.ca, if there are errors in the name, SIN, or spouse.

• The online Personalized Pension Estimator at the TPP web site will be updated to include the 2005 information to calculate pension estimates. Members will also be able to access their own "person profile" online. This profile contains the record of the member’s service and contribution pension history. Information on new access procedures to the estimator and "person profile" will be included with the member’s benefit statement.

• The TPP joined the National Public Service Pension Transfer Agreement on March 24, 2006. The agreement allows plan members with service in certain other public-sector pension plans (outside of teaching) to transfer their service into the TPP so that they can increase the pension benefits they will receive. Members interested in transferring their former service should contact the TPP to see if they are eligible to do so call 1-800-665-6770, Victoria 250-953-3022, Vancouver 604-660-4088, tpp@pensionsbc.ca.

Layoff service & pension credit
As a member of the TPP, you may be able to enhance your pension by purchasing (as a general leave of absence) time you were laid off and placed on a recall list. This applies if you don’t return to work while on recall or if you do return to work with the same or a different employer. You must apply to purchase this time before your recall rights expire.

You can apply to purchase periods of layoff service as a general leave of absence in the following situations:

  • You were laid off and placed on a recall list.
  • You were on a continuing contract or had seniority rights at the time of the layoff and were eligible and elected to be placed on the recall list.
  • You were on a temporary contract and were laid off before the contract expired and you were eligible and elected to be placed on the recall list. In this case, you can apply to purchase the remaining months of the term of the temporary contract.

Download the purchase of service application form from the TPP web site, complete, and mail to the TPP.

Countdown to retirement

9. Maintain a personal pension file of TPP and Canada Pension Plan (CPP) statements and information. Include any collective agreement provisions for retirement gratuities, incentives, and health benefit continuation.

8. Familiarize yourself with TPP:

  • Attend a pension seminar early in your career.
  • Visit the TPP web site. Use the personalized pension estimator and the purchase cost estimator tools.
  • Keep the TPP informed of any changes in your life (i.e., name change, marriage, separation, divorce, death of spouse, beneficiary if no spouse, etc.).
  • Attend a pension seminar in the year before your retirement date.

7. Enhance your pension before you resign/retire:

  • Apply to purchase service arising from a previous leave of absence, apply for Child Rearing Drop-out Credit, and/or reinstate any refunds you have taken.
  • If you have service in the college, municipal, public service, ICBC, or WCB pension plans and did not take a refund, check with that plan as to your accrued benefits and options, including transfer to the TPP.
  • If you have service in a TPP in another Canadian province/ territory and did not take a refund, check with that plan as to your accrued benefits and options, including transfer to the TPP.

6. Within the timelines of the provisions of your local collective agreement, apply for any retirement gratuity to which you may be entitled.

5. At least four months prior to your resignation/retirement date, contact the TPP for a retirement application package. Send the completed application form back to the TPP no later than the end of the month in which the pension is to start to ensure prompt pension payment.

4. At least 30 days before your date of retirement, send in a letter of resignation to your school board, with a copy to your local teachers’ union/ association office. (Check with your school board office to see when your current health benefits end to ensure continuous coverage.)

3. Memberships

  • Apply to the BCTF for Associate Membership.
  • Join the BC Retired Teachers’ Association, www.bctf.ca/rta.
  • Maintain membership in the BC College of Teachers, www.bcct.ca.

2. At age 60, if you are not working, consider applying for your CPP pension, www100.hrdc.gc.ca/indisp1000e.shtml.

1. At age 65, apply for Old Age Security, www100.hrdc.gc.ca/indisp1000e.shtml

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