Reserve Pension- Merged

dapaterson

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The challenge that you run into is that we tend to conflate pensionable service with pension benefits - "Thirty Five years of pensionable service will get you seventy percent in retirement".  That is incorrect.

Under all three acts (RCMP, PS and CAF (part I plan)) the thirty five year limit is on the timeframe during which you may accumulate benefits, which are pro-rated for times of part-time service.  If you are part-time in any of those, your maximum benefit decreases from the 70% maximum.  So, if you want to count I.1 against another plan, be warned: You'd be reducing the maximum benefit you could receive under that plan.


Let's look at Brihard - the equivalent of 6 years, 3 months of paid service in the CAF in, let's guess, a 12 year military career.  Now in the RCMP.

In the RCMP, he will be able to accumulate 35 years of paid, pensionable service and collect a 70% pension (reduced at age 65 due to combination with CPP, as all the plans are). Plus, he'll receive an additional pension, based on military service, under part I.1.

Were he able to transfer over his military time: His maximum in the RCMP would go from 35 years and 70% to 23 years pensionable, since the 12 years of being a CAF member all count as pensionable service.  The 12 years of being a CAF member would count as 12 years of pensionable service - even though he only worked about half of it and would receive credit for only the times he was paid.  So, add the 6 years 3 months of paid CAF service which is 12 years of pensionable service to the 23 years in the RCMP - pension is now maxed out at 35 years of pensionable service, but benefit tops out at 23 + 6 1/4 years of paid service = 58.5% of RCMP max pay.

As constructed the CFSA part I.1 does not count against that 35 year limit - you are able to build benefits beyond the normal 35 year limit in the RCMP or Public service, plus part I.1 in the Res F above and beyond that.  Essentially, part I.1 lets reservists in the two main non-military federal public sector pension plans exceed the 35 year limit on benefits.


All that said, communication on "You're in more than one plan at a time - here's what it means / how to manage it" has been a bit of a trainwreck.  As someone caught in the CFSA part I plus PSSA trap (and now released, and doing a surrender of CFSA part I to PSSA, except for periods of overlapping service which will be paid out as a transfer value because I released before 50 and can elect that, but it's still unclear what happens with class A time within the period that I am surrendering, to recapture some pensionable time to hit a maximum of 60% in the end state) I well understand the frustrations.

Making things worse is the Army's very cavalier attitude towards Reserve personnel administration and releases - "We'll get to it when we get to it" is a polite way of describing it.
 

brihard

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What burns my ass a bit is the inability so simply say 'You already did 6 years, 3 months full time service equivalent. We will count it as that. You can add that to your new federal pension, and you can do the remaining 28 years 9 months to hit your 35'. It seems needlessly complex, and it fails to incentivize reservists seeking other full time federal employment.

At the end of the day I'm probably going to just pop smoke on the CFSA, take my commuted value and fill up LIRA/RRSP and let it sit for the next 30 years. But it's annoying that the years themselves don't end up doing anything. If this were later to be remedied I'd look at buying back the years. But I won't subject myself to what you just described, it would be essentially punishing me for transferring pension value.
 

dapaterson

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Brihard said:
What burns my ass a bit is the inability so simply say 'You already did 6 years, 3 months full time service equivalent. We will count it as that. You can add that to your new federal pension, and you can do the remaining 28 years 9 months to hit your 35'. It seems needlessly complex, and it fails to incentivize reservists seeking other full time federal employment.

None of the acts as written provide for only counting paid time.  All say "The day you start, your 35 year clock starts ticking, whether you work one day or 12,784 days in that window makes no difference".  And a group within the RCMP attempted a court challenge on that (tied to part-time work, primarily post-maternity) and lost.

Brihard said:
At the end of the day I'm probably going to just pop smoke on the CFSA, take my commuted value and fill up LIRA/RRSP and let it sit for the next 30 years. But it's annoying that the years themselves don't end up doing anything. If this were later to be remedied I'd look at buying back the years. But I won't subject myself to what you just described, it would be essentially punishing me for transferring pension value.

You may (and I stress may) be able to elect periods of 6 months+ full time with the CAF (like an overseas deployment) and get the 1 for 1 time credit; but I think there's a time limit to elect that (like within a year of becoming a member of the Force, but I am not too familiar with the RCMPSA).

I will note that if you do not elect to take the transfer value within a year of your retirement date, you lose any future opportunity to do so.
 

daftandbarmy

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(Sends up a flare)

Has anyone got a link to the 'Enrolment Information and Acknowledgement of Plan Membership' form for Reservists?

My attempts to navigate the PWGSC website are leading to thoughts of self-harming....

Thank you! :)
 
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