Mandatory Retirement Moratorium FAQS – Faculty, Librarians & Program Directors

The University and the Faculty Association have ratified an agreement placing a moratorium on mandatory retirement at UBC. We know that you will have a number of questions about what this will mean for you. We hope that the following Questions and Answers, prepared jointly by the Faculty Association and the University, will help you understand the implications of the parties’ Agreement.


General Questions

When was mandatory retirement eliminated?

There was a temporary moratorium on mandatory retirement at UBC effective May 15, 2007. The moratorium was in place until January 1, 2008 when the new legislation came into effect by the Provincial Government.

What is the status of the Provincial Government’s new legislation abolishing mandatory retirement in British Columbia?

The Provincial Government has passed legislation changing the definition of “age” to 19 years or more (the current definition of age is “19 years or more and less than 65 years”) effective January 1, 2008.

When did the Agreement come into effect?

The Agreement came into effect May 15, 2007.

Does this Agreement apply to all members of the Faculty Association?

Yes, although depending on the rank of the member certain provisions may or may not apply.

What happens if I want to retire at my Normal Retirement Date (i.e. June 30 or December 31 after I turn 65)?

  1. You are welcome to retire on your Normal Retirement Date.
  2. Please advise your head of academic unit in writing well in advance of your retirement. Normally you should provide 12 months’ notice; 18 months notice is preferred.
  3. Benefits: Your benefit coverage with the University ceases on your Normal Retirement Date; however you are eligible for post-retirement benefits.
  4. Pension: You will want to speak with the Pensions Administration Office about collecting your pension and other financial issues arising from your retirement.
  5. Financial counselling (up to 3 hours) and retirement workshops are offered to help you with this process.
  6. Emeritus status: If your age and length of service in an eligible rank equals 70, you are entitled to Professor Emeritus status, provided your Dean is in support of your status.

What happens if I want to continue to work past my Normal Retirement Date (i.e. June 30 or December 31 after I turn 65)?

You have a number of options. You may:

  1. continue to work full-time, until you choose to retire;
  2. consider a reduced appointment (see the Agreement on Reduced Appointments);
  3. elect, if you are 60 years of age and have 10 years of continuous full-time service at the University, to take a Retirement Option including:
    • Phased-in Retirement or
    • Part-Time Appointment or
    • Reduced-Scope Appointment

See below for more information on these three options, including the notice requirements. Note that if your Normal Retirement Date is in 2007, there are specific notice requirements of which you need to be aware.

Regardless of which option you chose, it would be helpful if you would discuss your plans with your head of academic unit. If you are planning on retiring or selecting a Retirement Option you must provide notice (see below for the details).

Benefit coverage: Your benefits will continue until age 71 or until you voluntarily collect your pension, with the following exceptions: basic group life insurance coverage will be reduced at your Normal Retirement Date; and the income replacement program and spousal optional life insurance are not available after your Normal Retirement Date.

Pensions: You have two options:

  1. You can delay your pension commencement date and you and the University will continue to make contributions to the Pension Plan until the earlier of
    • your chosen retirement date, or
    • the latest date permitted by the Income Tax Act (currently age 71).
  2. You can collect your pension, in which case all contributions and group benefit plan coverage will cease.

Financial counselling (up to 3 hours) and retirement workshops are offered to help you plan for retirement.

What are the options for me if I am a tenure stream faculty member, librarian or program director or a full-time 12-Month Lecturer (“member”) considering retirement?

The Normal Retirement Date at UBC continues to be the June 30th or December 31st date following your 65th birthday. In approaching your 65th birthday you have the following options. You may:

  • Choose to continue to work full-time;
  • Speak to your head of academic unit about working part-time (with a full scope of responsibilities) under the Agreement on Reduced Appointments for tenured members or at the election of a 12-Month Lecturer;
  • Elect to take a Retirement Option of either a Part-Time Appointment, a Phased-in Appointment or a Reduced-Scope Appointment. Notice must be given – that notice is irrevocable. See web site for details on what each option provides;or
  • Retire

I am a term appointee. What are my options in considering retirement?

In approaching your 65th birthday, you may choose to continue working on either a full- or part-time basis (subject to reappointment) or you may choose to retire. A member in a term position such as a Sessional Lecturer or a part-time appointment will continue to have a Normal Retirement Date at the end of their appointment in which they reached their 65th birthday.

What about joint appointments?

The terms of the Agreement apply to Joint Appointments. To avoid unnecessary confusion or misunderstanding, it is extremely important that, in the case of Joint Appointments, the Home Department should consult and work with the other department(s) to ensure a smooth transition. Members should discuss retirement matters with the Heads of both the Home and Non-Home Department(s).

What is the point of having a Normal Retirement Date when there is no longer mandatory retirement at UBC?

While you may continue to work past age 65, there will be changes to benefit coverage after age 65. It also provides an opportunity for a discussion on your long term plans at the University. Other universities, such as the University of Toronto, have also retained the concept of a normal retirement date, even though there is no obligation to retire at age 65.

How much notice do I have to give in advance of my retirement plans?

The agreement provides that notice of intention to retire be given well in advance which will normally be one year (but 18 months is preferred) in advance of your proposed retirement date. In the case of the retirement options, one year in advance of the date you intend to take an option. In all cases, the notice period may be waived by agreement between the individual and the head of academic unit.

What if I don’t give one year’s notice of my intention to retire?

The agreement provides that notice of intention to retire be given well in advance which will normally be one year (but 18 months is preferred) to enable departments to engage in academic planning. If you wish to retire without giving one year’s notice, the options provided by the agreement may not be available.

Who do I have to notify of my retirement intentions?

Notify your head of academic unit in writing.

Does mandatory retirement elimination impact my ability to retire early?

No, you can retire early at any time as long as you give advance notice of your intentions to retire.

Where can I find information about the moratorium on mandatory retirement on the web?

Other online resources:

Email Faculty Relations at fr@exchange.ubc.ca and we will get back to you with either a response to your question or will re-direct you to the most appropriate person to help with your issue.

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Retirement Options

The Phased-In Retirement Option requires a minimum of a 33-1/3% appointment in any one year over three years. Is it possible for a faculty member to arrange a different scenario with his/her head of academic unit? For example, 100% year one; 50% year two, and 0% in year three?

While it is possible to arrange a variety of scenarios over the three years, the 0% in the last year would not fit under the provisions of a phased-in retirement option.

If I decide to continue working beyond my normal retirement date, can I opt out of teaching?

No, members who choose to work beyond normal retirement date are required to continue the full scope of their normal duties which will include teaching. The only alternative is for the member, if eligible, to request a reduced appointment retirement option that would allow for reduced scope, subject to approval by the head of academic unit.

Will I continue to accrue credit towards study leave if I continue working beyond my normal retirement date?

Yes. Note however that the following exceptions will apply if you enter into a Retirement Option:

  1. There will be no further accrual of service towards study leave eligibility once notice to enter into a Retirement Option has been given;
  2. Where you may be eligible for a study leave, it must be planned before entering into a Retirement Option and completed within the time of the option;
  3. There must be the equivalent of at least one year of full-time service between the end of the study leave and retirement; and
  4. Salary paid during the study leave will be as provided for in the Agreement on Reduced Appointments.

Who is eligible to take a Retirement Option?

The Retirement Options are available to faculty members, program directors in Continuing Studies and librarians who are 60 years of age and have at least 10 years of full-time continuous service.

What counts as full-time service?

Full-time service is an active appointment in an eligible rank in the faculty bargaining unit. This includes paid leaves including sabbaticals, maternity, parental and short term sick leaves and time spent in a reduced appointment under the Agreement on Reduced Appointments. Unpaid personal or disability leaves or secondments do not count as full-time service.

If I opt to work part-time in one of the Retirement Appointment Options, what proportion of my salary will I receive each year?

Your salary during any the retirement appointment options will be pro-rated on the basis of percentage appointment in each year.

How much notice do I have to give if I want to choose a Retirement Appointment Option?

You must provide reasonable (12-18 months) notice to your Department Head  of your intention to enter into a retirement appointment option.   Notice may be waived by the Head.

Will I continue to get career progress, merit and PSA during a Retirement Appointment Option?

You will continue to be eligible for career progress, merit and PSA and any across the board increases as negotiated with the Faculty Association each year during your retirement appointment option.

 

I want to take the Part-time Appointment Option but I want to retire after 2 years instead of 4 years. Is this possible?

Yes, it is possible to shorten the appointment period.

I took 2 years of unpaid leave since I was hired 10 years ago. I am now 60 years old. Am I eligible to elect a retirement option today?

No, the Agreement requires that you have 10 years of continuous full-time service. However, you may wish to consider a Reduced Appointment under the Agreement on Reduced Appointments (see below).

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Reduced Appointments

What is a Reduced Appointment?

A Reduced Appointment is a part-time appointment for Faculty Association members with tenure or grant tenure. Such appointments can be reduced to 50 – 99% short term or until retirement. The Agreement on Reduced Appointments sets out the terms for these appointments.

What options are there for a pre-retirement reduced workload?

If you are a tenured member of the Faculty Association, you can request a reduced appointment to a minimum of 50% under the Agreement on Reduced Appointments.

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Sessional Lecturers

Can Sessional Lecturers work past age 65?

Yes. The Agreement placing a moratorium on mandatory retirement applies to Sessional Lecturers, as well as other faculty appointments.

Can Sessionals elect to take a Retirement Option?

No. Retirement Options are available only to tenured or confirmed faculty, librarians, and program directors and full-time 12-month lecturers. However, a Sessional can opt to accept fewer course assignments at any time.

 

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Benefits

What benefits continue if I work past my normal retirement date and when do they end? Are there any changes to these plans?

The following benefits plans will continue with no changes:

  • Medical Services Plan
  • Extended Health Benefits Plan
  • Dental Plan
  • Employee and Family Assistance Plan
  • Optional Life Insurance for Faculty Member (Employee Life)
  • Professional Development Reimbursement Fund
  • Dependent Benefits Coverage Following Death of a Member

Your Basic Group Life insurance coverage will reduce by 50% to 1x your annual salary.

These benefits end when you begin to collect your pension on a voluntary basis or as required by law (age 71).

What benefits end on my normal retirement date?

The following benefits plans end on your normal retirement date:

  • Income Replacement Plan
  • Optional Life Insurance for Spouse of Faculty Member (Spousal Life)

What happens to my tuition waiver benefits? Do my tuition benefits end when I start taking any amount of my pensions and continue to work?

Your tuition waiver benefits continue, with no change, regardless of whether you collect your pension and continue to work.

Can I apply for the Retirement and Survivor Benefits once I start receiving any amount of my pension and my active benefits end?

Yes, you may apply for this program and it is at your own cost. Please see the RSB website for more details

What happens to my benefits if I take one of the Retirement Options?

Your benefits will be based on the terms in the Reduced Appointment agreement. Income replacement plan, basic Group life insurance, and sick leave benefits will be based on actual salary until your Normal Retirement Date. There are no reductions in Medical Services Plan, Extended Health, Dental, EFAP, and Tuition. Pension will be based on actual salary unless you are 55 years old and have a minimum of 15 years of services. Please see a href=”http://www.hr.ubc.ca/faculty-relations/collective-agreements/appointment-reduce/#9″>Reduced Appointments for more information.

However, if you continue to work beyond your normal retirement date, any changes to those benefits will occur as stipulated above.

What about the Canada Pension Plan (CPP)?

You may apply to receive your CPP benefits after age 65, or between 60 and 64 if you meet the requirements. There are benefits to delaying receipt of benefits until age 70. Information about the plan and how to apply is available on the Services Canada website.

What should I do if I am receiving my CPP benefits and am continuing to work?

You cannot contribute to CPP and receive benefits at the same time. To stop CPP deductions from your paycheque, you should bring a copy of your CPP stub or other confirmation that you are in receipt of benefits to Payroll. Payroll cannot stop deductions without this confirmation.

What about the Old Age Security Plan?

If you meet the eligibility requirements, you should apply for your Old Age Security Plan benefits six months before you turn 65. The Service Canada website has more details.

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Pension

What are my pension options at my normal retirement date (age 65) if I continue to work?

You have two options:

  1. You can delay your pension commencement date and you and the University will continue to make contributions to the Pension Plan until the earlier of
    • your chosen retirement date, or
    • the latest date permitted by the Income Tax Act (currently age 71).
  2. You can collect your pension, in which case all contributions and group benefit plan coverage will cease.

The Income Tax Act requires that I collect my pension at age 71. Can I continue to work past 71?

You can continue to work but all contributions and current group benefit plan coverage will cease. Alternatively, you can access Retirement and Survivor Benefits.

How can I find out what my pension will be?

The Pension Administration Office offers individual information sessions on pension-related matters. To make an appointment, please call 604-822-8100. Further information on retirement as well as links to other retirement related sites can be found on the Plan’s website. You can also use the pension calculator to estimate future account balances(s) and monthly annuity you may receive upon retirement from the UBC Faculty Pension Plan (FPP)

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Members Receiving Disability or IRP Benefits

I am unable to perform my duties as a faculty member and have been receiving IRP benefits for the past 5 years. What does this Agreement mean for me?

Under the terms of the Agreement, members are not entitled to IRP coverage after their Normal Retirement Date. This means that your IRP coverage will terminate on your Normal Retirement Date. If you are on IRP, and are approaching your Normal Retirement Date, Human Resources will be contacting you to advise you of your options.

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Retirement Counselling

Does the University provide any retirement counselling for me?

Yes. The University provides the following processes to support retirement:

  1. Pension: The Pension Administration Office offers individual information sessions on pension-related matters. To make an appointment please call 604-822-8100. Further information on retirement as well as links to other retirement related sites can be found on the Plan’s website. You can also use the pension calculator to estimate future account balances(s) and monthly annuity you may receive upon retirement from the UBC Faculty Pension Plan (FPP).
  2. One-day sessions for members who are at least 60 years old, and their spouses, coordinated by the Pension Administration Office, featuring guest speakers on wills and estates, the Faculty Pension Plan, retirement options, and other related topics;
  3. Customized 2-day retirement workshops for members who are at least 60 years old, and spouses, which provides a holistic approach with an external consultant; and
  4. Individual counselling with a University-approved financial consultant, up to three hours per member.

Does the Faculty Association provide any retirement counselling for me?

Yes, the Faculty Association in conjunction with UBC Continuing Studies also offers a financial planning lecture series every spring. Contact the Faculty Association for information.

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