Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How do I become a Participant in the Plan?
A. You will become a Participant on the first day of the month in which you accrue 400 Hours in Covered Employment during a period of 12 consecutive months beginning with your first day of employment ending on your first anniversary of employment.
Q. I am going through a divorce, what happens to my pension?
A. If your former spouse is awarded a portion of your earned benefit through the Plan, it will be necessary that you and your former spouse complete a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) so that the Plan can pay benefits to your former spouse. You may contact the Benefit Office and request that a sample QDRO be provided to you.
Q. Does the Pension Plan affect Social Security benefits in any way?
Q. Can pensions be paid or assigned or garnered to others?
A. No. Pensions cannot be assigned to a third party. The only exceptions are for payments in accordance with a "Qualified Domestic Relations Order," or on the death of the Participant to a designated beneficiary.
Q. If benefits are denied, may a participant or beneficiary appeal?
A. Yes. Any participant or beneficiary denied a benefit has the right to appeal to the Trustees within 60 days after the date shown on the letter of denial. The rules for filing an appeal are briefly outlined in your Summary Plan Description (SPD).
Q. How far in advance should I request an application for retirement?
A. You can request an application for retirement any time during the 180 days prior to your expected retirement date but in no event, not later than the last working day of the month prior to the month in which you want to retire with this Plan. Though you can download the application on this website, you will still need the benefit option form, which details optional benefits as well as the monthly value for those benefits. That form is provided to you from the Benefit Office only.
Q. In addition to the application for retirement, what other documents do I have to submit to the Fund office?
A. You will need to provide photocopies of the birth certificates for you and your spouse, copy of your marriage license, copy of photo state issued identification for you and your spouse, and copy of you and your spouse's Social Security card. If you are divorced, you are required to submit a copy of the final judgment of dissolution with copies of the marital settlement or property settlement agreement and/or a copy of the Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO).
Q. I am currently receiving a monthly pension benefit from the Plan and would like to change the tax withholding. What needs to be done?
A. You can change your tax withholding as often as you wish by completing a new W-4P which can be obtained from the Benefit Office or downloaded from the website. Once this form is completed, you must return it to the Benefit Office for implementation. You may submit your W-4P form through the Participant Portal.
Q. I am currently receiving a monthly pension benefit from the Plan and would like to change the bank account information. How do I change this information?
A. You can change your direct deposit information by completing a new Direct Deposit Form which can be obtained from the Benefit Office or downloaded from the website. Once this form is completed, you must return it to the Benefit Office for implementation. You may also change your bank account online through the Participant Portal.
Q. I am thinking of retiring, what is the earliest age I can retire?
A. A member can retire as early as age 55 as long as you have 10 vesting credits. If you retire early, your benefit will be reduced for every month you retire prior to the normal retirement age of 65. Also, if you retire early, you may not work in the trade, craft, industry anywhere in the United States and continue to receive your monthly benefit, you will be suspended until you are no longer work. You should contact the Benefit Office to discuss your eligibility for early retirement.
Q. I recently moved, how do I change my address?
A. For your protection, all address changes must be submitted in writing. You can change your address in one of three ways:
a) Mail or fax a letter to the Benefit Office with your new address or
b) Complete the Address Change Form located on the website and mail or fax to the Benefit Office for processing.
c) Log into your Participant Portal and complete the address change form online.
Q. I am age 65 and I'm contemplating retiring, can I still work for my employer and receive my monthly pension benefit?
A. If you are age 65 and want to retire and continue to work for a contributing employer, Yes, you can receive your monthly pension benefit and continue to work for your contributing employer. There is no restriction of the number of hours you work for that contributing employer either and still receive your pension.
Q. Whom should I contact if I'm getting a divorce and what documents do I need to submit?
A. Please call the Benefit Office and advise the Healthcare and Retirement Services that you are getting a divorce or have already gotten divorced. You will also need to submit a FULL copy of your Dissolution of Marriage Judgment, QDRO (Qualified Domestic Relations Order) Martial Settlement or Property Settlement Agreement and any Qualified Medical Child Support Order to this office.
Q. I am age 65, retired and still am working for my employer, does my pension get adjusted for the work I am doing now?
A. Yes, an age 65+ working retiree, will have their monthly pension benefit adjusted for the work they are doing in a Plan Year as long as you work at least 400 hour in the plan year, which runs January through December. Each February, the Benefit Office reviews all working retirees of contributing employers and recalculates their monthly pension benefit based on the hours worked and contributions received on your behalf.
Contact Retirement Services for any additional questions you may have about your pension benefit.