On June 25, 2010, President Obama signed the Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare Beneficiaries and Pension Relief Act of 2010 ("PRA") into law. This legislation was passed in an effort to help fundamentally sound plans that have become financially challenged by the the current economic climate.
The California Ironworkers Field Pension Trust qualified under the terms of the legislation. The attached Notice of Pension Relief Election will explain in detail the ramifications of this program.
In the event you have any questions or would like additional information about the election, you may contact the Trust Fund office by phone at (626) 792-7337 or by mail at California Ironworkers Field Trust Funds, 131 North El Molino Avenue, Suite 330, Pasadena, CA 91101-1878.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the Administrators of the Plan?
The Pension Plan is administered by a Board of Trustees made up equally of representatives of the Union and of the Employers. The actions of the Trustees in governing the Pension Trust Fund are ruled by an Agreement and Declaration of Trust. This provides that all money paid in to the Pension Trust Fund or earned by the Pension Trust Fund can be used only for the purpose of providing pensions, in accordance with the Rules and Regulations, for the Participants covered by the Pension Plan and for defraying administrative expenses.
The Trustees may amend or interpret these Rules and Regulations from time to time. The Trustees will make every effort to assure that Participants are informed of any changes in the Plan.
A Participant's right to pension benefits and the right of a beneficiary to survivor's benefits are governed by the complete Rules and Regulations of the Pension Plan. The explanatory material in this booklet is designed to clarify the Plan and great care was taken to make it accurate. However, if there should be any question or conflict, it would be decided on the basis of the full text of the Pension Plan itself.
If you have any question about any part of the Plan, please direct your questions to the Fund Office. The Fund Office is the only official source of information about the Plan and your status.
Who is Covered by the Plan?
The Plan covers only Employees of contributing Employers. Work done by any owner-operator, partner, independent contractor or self-employed person is not covered by the Plan.
Can a Participant or Beneficiary Appeal if Benefits are Denied?
Yes. Any Participant or beneficiary who is denied a benefit or disagrees with the type or amount of benefits allowed has the right to appeal to the Board of Trustees. Please refer to the following link under the applications & forms (PEN-031)
Are Plan Documents Available to Participants?
Yes. Copies of the Plan, summary descriptions and a summary of the annual report are available for inspection at the Fund Office during regular business hours. On written request copies will be supplied by mail. Copies of the Trust Agreement and the full annual report also are available for inspection at the Fund Office. These documents, too, can be supplied by mail on written request but a reasonable fee will be charged. It is advisable to find out what the charge will be before sending your request.
Must a Participant retire when he reaches age 65?
No. Retirement under this Plan is voluntary, however you must begin collecting payments upon reaching age 70½.
May Pension Benefits be Assigned?
No.This is prohibited by the Plan. However, the Plan is required by law to pay benefits in accordance with a Qualified Domestic Relations Order. The Plan will also honor any valid tax lien or authorized child or spousal support orders.
Am I a Vested Participant?
A participant shall be considered Vested if:
- Commencing June 1, 1998 and thereafter, he is an Active Participant and has accumulated 5 years of Vesting Service.
- Prior to June 1, 1998 a participant must earn a minimum of 10 years of Vesting Credit to be considered a Vested Participant.
- Once Vested, a Participant can not suffer a permanent Break in Service.
Units which measure the amount of time a Participant has worked for pension purposes:
- Used to establish a Participant's right to a Vested Pension, not used to calculate a pension benefit.
- A Participant earns one year of Vesting Credit for each Plan Year in which he completes 1000 hours.
- If the Participant completes less than 1000 hours in a Plan Year, he will not earn any Vesting Service. If he completes more than 1000 hours in Plan Year, he still receives only one year of Vesting Service.
-Hours worked in excess of 1000 may not be carried over into the following Plan Year to obtain a Vested Credit.
-5.00 Vesting Credits are required to become a Vested Participant.
Future Service Credit (FSC)
-Apprentices begin earning pension credits immediately. These credits will have no dollar value until you become Vested. You must be vested for any dollar amount to apply to your benefit.
-A Plan Year begin June 1st and ends May 31st of the following year.
-1500 hours = 1.00 FSC
-A minimum of 350 hours must be worked in a Plan year to earn any Pension Credit and anything worked in excess of 1500 hours will be credited at a rate of 1/12 of a credit for each 125 hours worked in excess of 1500 hours.
-Example of credits earned versus hours Worked:
1500-1624= 1.00 Future Service Credit
1625-1749= 1.08 Future Service Credits
1750-1874= 1.17 Future Service Credits
-The same applies if you work a minimum of 350 hours but less than 1500:
350-374= .17 Future Service Credit
375-499= .25 Future Service Credit
How Many Pension Credits Do I Have?
Please refer to your Annual Statement or write to the Pension Trust for a copy of your Pension History.
How Much would My Monthly Pension Be?
The current rates for an Ironworker who is considered Active as of June 1, 2013 is $70.00 for hours worked on or after October 1, 2014.However, the rates vary if you have had a Separation in Service. Please submit a written request to the Trust Office to obtain information on the value of your pension
When The Pension Checks Are Mailed?
Pension checks are mailed 2 business days prior to the 1st of the month.
Do the Pensions Provided Under this Plan Affect Social Security Benefits?
No. The benefits under this Plan are in addition to benefits paid under Social Security.
Please contact our office via email or by calling 1-800-527-4613 if you have any further questions or comments. Please contact the Shop 509 office at (800) 973-0615. Please contact the Shop 790 office at (866) 339-7467.