You become a participant in the Plan as of the first day you work in Covered Employment.
You will continue to be a participant in the Plan until you receive all benefits earned under the Plan unless you suffer a Permanent Break in Service before you become vested.
Generally, you earn a Year of Service by working in "Covered Employment".
"Covered Employment" is employment for which an Employer has agreed to contribute to the Plan under a collective bargaining agreement with the Union. Beginning January 1, 2022 you earned a full credit in the Plan if you work 1,000 hours or more. You can also earn a ½ credit for hours in excess of 550 in a calendar year.
The Steamfitters’ Industry Pension Plan is a defined benefit plan that promises a specific, predetermined benefit to employees upon their retirement. The benefit is based on factors such as the employee's work history, years of service, and age at retirement. The current formula which became effective January 1, 2022 provides a monthly benefit of $41 per year of service for each year of service through 1983, $130 for years 1984 through 2021 and $145 for 2022 and thereafter.
The Pension Fund will deduct federal taxes from a monthly pension benefit. You are required to complete at the time of retirement a W-4P form. Each year you will receive a 1099-R tax form from the Fund Office to use when filing taxes.
Additionally, you have the option to withhold New York State tax by completing an IT-2104P. Taxes for states other than New York cannot be withheld.
If you are least 54 years old, you may contact the Pension Fund in writing to request a pension estimate. Generally, an estimate of your pension benefits will be mailed to you within 5 to 10 days of receipt. It is important to remember that an estimate is an estimate and all calculations are subject to change prior to your actual retirement date based on certain factors such as age and mortality rates. In addition, the pension calculator on the member self-service account can be used to generate an estimate of your pension benefits immediately. You can run it as often as you like and insert assumptions as to the years you believe you will earn between now and the projected retirement date.
Being divorced can affect your pension benefit. It is extremely important that ALL divorce papers be submitted to the Fund Office as soon as possible after your divorce has been finalized. You should review your stipulation of settlement to determine if your former spouse is entitled to a portion of your pension benefit. Usually, the portion allocated to your former spouse is a calculation involving your years of credit service and the number of marital years. A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is required to divide your pension benefits. Please contact the Pension Fund for a model QDRO should you need one.
The eligibility to collect unemployment benefits rests with the Department of Labor, not with the Pension Fund. Check with your local unemployment office or online at www.laborstateny.us for further information.
If you have been deemed disabled by the Social Security Administration, you must contact the Pension Fund immediately upon receipt of your “Notice of Award”. Keep in mind, an award only affects vested members under the age of 60. Once the Pension Fund has received a copy of the award letter, an estimate of pension benefits will be provided to you. At that time, you must make an appointment with the Pension Fund for a pension interview where a full explanation of options will be offered. In order for your Pension benefit to be fully retroactive you must apply within 90 days of the mailing date listed on the Notice of Award.
Yes. In the final months prior to your retirement, you probably will have many questions which can be addressed over the phone or through the mail. However, in a "face to face" environment, the Pension Fund has found, based on completing thousands of interviews, that this setting is extremely beneficial to both the member and spouse. Many fears and myths can be alleviated in this simple one-time meeting. Virtual interviews can also be conducted if you cannot join us in the Fund Office. Please contact the Fund Office to discuss scheduling your interview.
The Pension Seminar is typically conducted on a two-year cycle. The next seminar date is November 18, 2023.