You automatically become a member of Ontario Teachers’ and begin to build credit when your employer deducts pension contributions from your pay.
Contributing to your pension
All eligible members must contribute to the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan. As soon as you start teaching, your employer will deduct pension contributions from your pay. Contributions, which are sent to us, are matched dollar for dollar by the Ontario government and participating employers on behalf of all members. Contributions are tax deductible and will be reflected on your T4 slip.
While contributions are important, your pension is based on your years of credit (your actual time worked) and average salary, not the amount you contribute.
How much do you contribute?
You contribute a percentage of your salary to your future pension. To see what you contribute to the plan:
We use a two-tiered formula to calculate how much you contribute to your pension. It's divided between your annual salary up to the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) contributions and benefits limit, and your salary above the CPP limit.
For example, in 2021 you contribute:
10.4% of your annual salary up to the CPP limit, plus
12.0% of any salary above the CPP limit.
The CPP limit, which changes annually, is $61,600 in 2021.
Contributions are matched by the Ontario government and participating employers on behalf of all members.
How Ontario Teachers' and CPP work together
Contributions to Ontario Teachers' are lower on earnings up to the CPP limit and higher on earnings above it. We provide a bridge benefit, which is intended to supplement your retirement income until age 65 when you're eligible for an unreduced CPP pension. The month after you turn 65, or immediately if you start a CPP disability pension, the bridge benefit ends and your pension payment is adjusted.
If you're a teacher earning a salary of $78,000, you'll pay $8,374.40 in pension contributions in 2021.
10.4% x $61,600 =
12.0% x $16,400 =
($78,000 - $61,600 = $16,400)
If you're a teacher earning a salary of $65,000, you'll pay $6,814.40 in pension contributions in 2021. Almost all of your contributions will be made at the lower contribution rate.
10.4% x $61,600 =
12.0% x $3,400 =
($65,000 - $61,600 = $3,400)
How we calculate your pension
You qualify for an unreduced retirement pension when you reach your 85 factor (age + qualifying years = 85), or at age 65. This means we don't apply any reduction factors when calculating your basic annual pension.
However, once you reach age 65 OR begin collecting a disability pension from the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), your bridge benefit ends and your pension is adjusted based on:
If you earn $85,000 in your five highest salary years and have 30 years of credit, your basic annual pension would be 2% × 30 × $85,000 = $51,000.
However, once you reach age 65 OR begin collecting a disability pension from the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), your pension is adjusted based on:
(CPP adjustment factor applied the year you turn 65)
You're eligible for a reduced pension when you're at least 50 years old. Your reduced pension is calculated just like a regular retirement pension, and then reduced by a 2.5% or 5% reduction formula.
How we measure service and credit
The length of your teaching career affects the amount of your pension and when you're eligible to receive it. We measure your plan membership in two ways:
This is the actual number of years, months, and days you've worked and contributed to the plan. We use this figure to calculate the amount of your pension.
This is the number of school years in which you've taught for at least a portion of the year. Qualifying years determine when you're eligible for an unreduced retirement pension. Because of changes in the plan, there are different rules for measuring your qualifying years.