Reserve Pension- Merged

crenz

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Hey, I have a question about buying back a reserve pension. I checked around this thread but didn't see any similar questions, so apologies if this has been answered.

I was in the reserves from 2006-2011, and have a total of 2years 130ish days during that time. I was a member of the Reserve pension (1.1 I believe its called) at that time, and when I left I choose the transfer out value, which was transferred into the LIRA.

I rejoined the reg force in 2015 and elected to buy back my previous reserve time. I filled out all the paperwork, submitted them, and was than told.... to just wait. Apparently the pension centre does not have a policy in place to buy back transfer value, and the person I spoke to gave no time frame in regards to when it is possible. He has been waiting since 2007.

Has anyone had any further success? Am I missing a step? On the pension website there is no indication of this being an issue, nor was there when I got my transfer out value. The website even says I would be paying back what I received + an interest rate compounded quarterly. I know previous reservists who have bought back their service with no issues, any recent policy changes?

If there was a guarantee date in the future I would be fine waiting, but I also know it could never happen, or if it did I could suddenly be charged a large amount to buy back (if its 7% compounded yearly for example, and my transfer value in a LIRA would not earn that).

Any similar experiences?
 

dapaterson

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Once you elect, the interest clock stops - the delays are the fault of the system, and not the individual.

Not certain what the rules are when you take a transfer value and later re-enrol; I'll ask a few people I know and see what I acn find out.
 

crenz

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Well that's a relief at least,still hope to buy back sooner as opposed to later.

Thanks for looking into it, I really appreciate it!
 

runormal

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dapaterson said:
At this time, I beleive if you do not have a PKI card you'll have to call the pension office for information on your current pension value and related information.

Toll free: 1-800-267-0325
Monday to Friday
8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (your local time)

If you have a PKI card and a DWAN connection, the CAF pension applications are available at: https://protege-secure.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/nonprotege-unprotected/partactapppenfc-actmemcfpenapp/demandeacces-accessrequest-eng.html

So I've just done this and I'm actually quite shocked what my pension is "worth" give the amount that I feel that I've put into it.

The guy on the phone told me it would cost $1200 or so buy back my first two years, but by doing so it'd be roughly "doubling" the $1200 if/when I elect the Transfer Value, but the agent on the phone couldn't give me a reason why. I assume that this or more less like the PSSA in this regard in that if I buy my time then so does the army and therefore it increase the "worth" of my pension. Is that the jist of it? I'm not really sure how much longer I'm going to stay in the PRES, but if that's the case then it's really a no brainer..


Edit:

dapaterson said:
The RFPP (strictly speaking, CFSA part I.1) is designed as a stand alone plan that is not interfaced with the other federal plans.  While there is a 35 year limit, it is not integrated with the PSSA and RCMPSA like the CFSA part I is.

That lack of integration is to your benefit.  "Reaching 35 years earlier" would be a bug, not a feature.  Remember that eligibility thresholds depend on attaining a certain number of years of pensionable service; if you were to hit 35 combined early, it's very possible that you'd not reach any of the magic thresholds and be unable to draw an unreduced annuity until age 60 (or 65, depending on when you joined the PS plans).

Here's why: In my case, I was a simultaneous contributor to CFSA part I ("CFPP") and the PSSA for 8 years, with 19 years of prior pensionable service under CFSA part I.  However, CFSA part I pensions are based not on the number of years of pensionable service you have, but on the number of days of CAF service you have.  If you are Reg F four your entire career with no leave without pay, the two are the same.  In my case, as a part-time Reservist with about 10 years of full-time service, it means that of my 27 years of pensionable service under the CFSA, I have about 16 years of CAF service.  The eleven year gap represents a period where I can never get pensionable service - a hit of about 22%.

The pension offices are poorly equipped for this.  Most staff have not the faintest of schmicks about the Reserve pension plan and confuse it with the Reg F pension plan.  It's part of the disastrous implementation of pension benefits for the Reserve Force.  The frontline staff are ill-informed and have poor resources to draw on; my past experience was that I knew more than they did - and usually ended up educating them.

So I was talking to my Tp Sgt about pensions and general and he said that he is in a similar situation. 10 or so years of CLS B/C, but prior and after is Class A. The member doesn't currently work for the government, but is hoping to transfer over sooner or later. So then based on your post I'm under the assumption that each year he stays in the P-Res he is actually shooting himself in the foot and "losing" pensionable time as he'll be accumulating years of pensionable service, but at a part-time rate. I.E  1 year will be 25% of a year based on the number of days served..





 

dapaterson

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runormal said:
So I've just done this and I'm actually quite shocked what my pension is "worth" give the amount that I feel that I've put into it.

The guy on the phone told me it would cost $1200 or so buy back my first two years, but by doing so it'd be roughly "doubling" the $1200 if/when I elect the Transfer Value, but the agent on the phone couldn't give me a reason why. I assume that this or more less like the PSSA in this regard in that if I buy my time then so does the army and therefore it increase the "worth" of my pension. Is that the jist of it? I'm not really sure how much longer I'm going to stay in the PRES, but if that's the case then it's really a no brainer..

That's more or less correct.  Depending how long you stay, you may well more than double it.

Edit:

So I was talking to my Tp Sgt about pensions and general and he said that he is in a similar situation. 10 or so years of CLS B/C, but prior and after is Class A. The member doesn't currently work for the government, but is hoping to transfer over sooner or later. So then based on your post I'm under the assumption that each year he stays in the P-Res he is actually shooting himself in the foot and "losing" pensionable time as he'll be accumulating years of pensionable service, but at a part-time rate. I.E  1 year will be 25% of a year based on the number of days served..

More or less, yes.  Everybody's situation is different, so it's hard to pin down the precise impact, though.
 

NJD

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I’m the finance person in this couple.

My husband released from the CAF after 30 years as a reservist. Mostly Class B and C. We bought back the pensionable service and he received an immediate annuity when he retired.

He has now re-enrolled and accepted an OUTCAN three year posting. He is currently Class B again. The Class B contract is less than one year and then will be a three year Class C. There are no pension contribution deductions coming from the Class B pay. He is still receiving his full annuity. He received a letter from Pension Services that suggests he will not be paying into the pension until on contract for 365 days (or something to that effect).

Does this sound right? I’m anticipating having to pay back the annuity received - just in case. Shouldn’t he be paying into the pension again? If not, can we buy back the year?
 

dapaterson

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As I understand the rules, it's sections 8.3ff of the CF Superannuation Regulations (http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/regulations/C.R.C.,_c._396/FullText.html) which would come into play.  They are complex and confusing (at the best of times).

I think the "one year getting both" applies only to individuals whose annuity was received for Reg F, and not deemed Reg F service.  Thus yes, I would be putting aside the annuity payments.

I'd suggest that when talking with the pension office it is made abundantly clear that the former service for which he is receiving an annuity is full-time Reserve Service deemed to be Regular Force, and not Regular Force service; if they understand that, their answers may change.  The "normal" course of action is a Reg F retiree coming back and drawing a pension for a year while getting paid at the same time; your significant other may be a trailblazer in this respect.
 

NJD

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As always, thanks for your response dapaterson. It’s good to have your understanding (even though it’s not advantageous to me). Hopefully it gets settled soon. I’ll keep you posted if it is a favourable new trail being blazed.
 

dapaterson

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OK, found the PSPC website on military pensions at: http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/fac-caf/rtr/pr-rm-ral-rar-eng.html

►  What happens if I previously was a Reserve Force member in the Regular Force Pension Plan and I rejoin the Reserve Force or have earnings again in the Reserve Force?

If, when you left the Regular Force Pension Plan, you started to receive a pension

You join the Regular Force Pension Plan, as soon as you start being paid for service in the Reserve Force – your monthly pension stops until you later release from the Canadian Armed Forces.

Note: If you rejoin the Regular Force Pension Plan, your pension will be recalculated when you release at a future date, and you may receive a larger pension since your pension will be based on your total pensionable service.
 

crenz

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dapaterson said:
Once you elect, the interest clock stops - the delays are the fault of the system, and not the individual.

Not certain what the rules are when you take a transfer value and later re-enrol; I'll ask a few people I know and see what I acn find out.

Hey Dapaterson, did you happen to find out more regarding TV and later re-enrolling? I have been officially told my the pension people I am unable to buy back time due to being a member of the 1.1 pension plan in the reserves, BUT I was also told it would not matter (basically, I would get credit for my time served, and still get 2% per year despite not paying into it). I touched base with some people who deal with releases on base, and confirmed that this was indeed false information.

I would normally trust the pension people at their word about buyback not being possible, but they have given so much incorrect info that I'm doing my own research to verify they are correct. I haven't found anything related to the transfer value and buying back though.
 

Stoker

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So i'm taking a transfer to the regular force and I contacted pension services a few weeks ago to see if I had to do anything when I transferred. They said no. Today I get in a pile of pension paperwork with my release date, pension statement,  forms and so forth. Do I need to do something with this or do I call them back again? I don't want to screw up anything.
 

kratz

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tomahawk6 said:
Way out of my lane but I would think the unit clerk could help ?

No.
Pensions are too complex for unit clerks.

If you haven't already bought back all of your previous pre-2007 PRes service,
This transfer to the RegF may open the door for the potential for that buyback.

Call / contact the national Pensions office to ask any questions to SMEs.
 

Stoker

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kratz said:
No.
Pensions are too complex for unit clerks.

If you haven't already bought back all of your previous pre-2007 PRes service,
This transfer to the RegF may open the door for the potential for that buyback.

Call / contact the national Pensions office to ask any questions to SMEs.

All bought back, called pension services and they said I didn't need to do anything. I wasn't expecting this large package of pension stuff if I was retiring. I would imagine its probably routine to get this as I am releasing and joining the regular force. I will probably call again tomorrow.
 

KanD

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Seeking advice and clarity on this particular situation as I am getting different information from the Pension Centre and both my employers every time I make an inquiry:

- I have been working Class A in the Primary Reserves since 2014 and have accumulated 4 years and 50 days under the 1.1 (reserve pension plan)

- I also work in the Canadian Public Service full-time indeterminate and have been contributing under the PSSA since 2016. I have 31 years of contributions remaining.

- I called both the CAF and PS Pensions Centres to inquire on transferring my PRes 1.1 pension to the PS PSSA pension and was informed the following:

(By CAF Pension Centre): I am at a disadvantage and am “shooting myself in the foot” by contributing to the PRes 1.1 and PSSA as I lose pensionable time as I accumulate time at a part-time rate (PRes) onto of my full-time (PSSA) contributions. Meaning that my 35 years of required contribution will be accumulated faster and I will not be allowed to make contributions in the regular 31 year time frame, reducing my overall pension amount.

(By PS Pension Centre): I am not allowed to contribute to both the 1.1 PRes plan and the PSSA and that I have a technical error in my pension file as it is illegal under the PSSA to contribute to two Federal pension plans at the same time. They refused to answer my transfer of 1.1 time into the PSSA as they said that is not even possible.

I would like to know if I am being given correct information and if anyone else also works in the PS full-time and is also contributing to the PRes 1.1 pension plan and how you are managing both.

I am concerned at this stage that my smartest move for long-term retirement benefits would be to cut my loses now and release from the PRes to avoid double contributions and reducing my overall pension upon retirement.

 

dapaterson

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The part I.1, or Reserve Force Pension Plan, is not combined with the PSSA or RCMPSA.  Time accumulated under part I.1 does not count against the 35 year combined limit for CFSA, PSSA and RCMPSA; only time under part I counts against the 35 year combined limit.

However, time under part I.1 cannot be transferred to other plans.

The PSSA respondent is wrong.  You can be a simultaneous contributor to CFSA part I.1 and another plan; you can even be a simultaneous contributor to part I and the PSSA (in which case the double-time issue mentioned by your CAF pension centre contact comes into play).  There is a 2008 CANFORGEN and a related PSSA Pension Bulletin explaining that yes, in some circumstances, you can be simultaneously in two full-time federal pension plans.

The pension offices are generally ignorant about the distinction between part I.1 and part I.  It is best to request that you speak to a supervisor to ensure you are getting correct information.

So, to answer your final question: As long as you remain within the CFSA part I.1 that pension has no impact on the maximum you can accumulate under the PSSA.
 

KanD

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Thank you, dapaterson. The information you provided is very helpful.

Is there any documentation or bulletin you can point me to that speaks/explains why time under Part I.1 cannot be transferred to other plans, namely the PSSA or RCMPSA?

dapaterson said:
The part I.1, or Reserve Force Pension Plan, is not combined with the PSSA or RCMPSA.  Time accumulated under part I.1 does not count against the 35 year combined limit for CFSA, PSSA and RCMPSA; only time under part I counts against the 35 year combined limit.

However, time under part I.1 cannot be transferred to other plans.

The PSSA respondent is wrong.  You can be a simultaneous contributor to CFSA part I.1 and another plan; you can even be a simultaneous contributor to part I and the PSSA (in which case the double-time issue mentioned by your CAF pension centre contact comes into play).  There is a 2008 CANFORGEN and a related PSSA Pension Bulletin explaining that yes, in some circumstances, you can be simultaneously in two full-time federal pension plans.

The pension offices are generally ignorant about the distinction between part I.1 and part I.  It is best to request that you speak to a supervisor to ensure you are getting correct information.

So, to answer your final question: As long as you remain within the CFSA part I.1 that pension has no impact on the maximum you can accumulate under the PSSA.
 

dapaterson

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There isn't formal direction "You may not transfer I.1 to another plan"; there is formal direction, within the acts that enable the plans and their related regulations about what can be transferred in.

So, the PSSA and PSSR explain what can be transferred in.

Specifically for pensionable service under the CFSA, it's PSSA 6(1)(b)(c) that permits you to buy back periods of full-time military service of six months or more, and PSSA 39 which provides for individuals "having been a member of the regular force" to surrender their pension benefits under the CFSA to the PSSA (that is understood to include personnel deemed to be regular force through the provisions of the CFSA and CFSR, specifically CFSA 3.1 and CFSR 8.1).

 

brihard

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KanD said:
Thank you, dapaterson. The information you provided is very helpful.

Is there any documentation or bulletin you can point me to that speaks/explains why time under Part I.1 cannot be transferred to other plans, namely the PSSA or RCMPSA?

Because it's a goddamned dumpster fire fueled with ineptitude, lit by fools, and stoked by incompetents

In the case of the RCMPSA, the RCMPSA actually does have a loosely worded provision to the effect that a contributor to RCMPSA can elect periods of 'six months or more full time service other than in the Regular Froce', subject to regulations etc etc. But regulations have never actually been made to allow for the election of service under CFSA I.1. And of course if you're a reservist with enough time in to make it worth tranfering, you probably have a bunch of 2, 3, 4 month stints that doesn't satisfy this criteria. In my case for instance, if yo take all my CAF reserve service and squeeze the air bubbles out, it's 6 years, 3 months of pensionable service. But if you limit it to periods of 6 months continuous or more (assuming back to back Cl Bs count), then it drops to 33 months.

When things slow down and the world is back to normal and I'm bored enough, I'm going to start kicking up a fuss about this and maybe by the time I'm starting to look at retirement it'll have been remedied. It's unconscionable that one type of military service cannot be effectively or meaningfully carried over as pensionable to other federal service.
 
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