Employer agrees to temporary extension of deadline for retiring members wanting to transfer out their pension

As we have outlined in a previous newsletter, the employer has unilaterally imposed new administrative rules changing the portability provisions of the York University Pension Plan. In particular, the new rules prohibit Plan members from transferring the value of their pension entitlement to a “locked-in” registered retirement savings plan or life income fund if they retire after attaining the age of 65. This is an option that a number of members exercise each year.

YUFA has grieved this change to members' pension options at retirement. It is worth noting that no formal Plan amendment has been filed with the Financial Services Commission, and sponsors of similar pension plans have not imposed the same restriction. Hence, YUFA has secured the employer's agreement to reconsider its position on pension portability as we give final consideration to moving the current grievance to arbitration.

In light of the unresolved dispute - and YUFA's recent request for the employer to review this issue - we have made a special request of the employer to relax the deadlines for giving notice of retirement. They have agreed to do so. Normally members must provide a minimum of nine months notice of their retirement, but under the current circumstances the employer is prepared to reduce this to three months. This waiver is specifically aimed at members who may be considering transferring the value of their pension entitlement out of the Plan upon retirement.

The official deadline to give notice for retirement on June 30, 2016 was October 1, 2015. If you have already given notice to retire by this date, but wish to see if this limited extension applies to you, we advise you to contact YUFA at [email protected] or 416-736-5236.