Learning about your pension

August 21, 2017

Whether you’re just starting your career, retired, or in between, we’re here to help you understand how the pension plan works for you.

myOTPP101 is an online curriculum spanning topics from preparing from retirement, your Statement of Pension Benefits, ending a spousal relationship, and planning for loved ones.

We’ve done the homework for you.  Follow us on Pinterest for content curated by topic.  Like us on Facebook to interact with us.

Check out the broadcasts below for answers to your FAQs. 

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What do I have to do to start collecting my pension?

Apply online by signing in to your Ontario Teachers’ online account. You can find the application under the ‘Your Pension’ tab at the top of your screen. Click “Apply now” to start the process.

You can apply up to four months in advance of your start date.  

To learn more about starting your pension, check out the broadcast here or below.

What happens to my pension if I get a divorce?

Like your house, car or bank account, your pension is a family asset.

Under Ontario’s Family Law Act, pension benefits accumulated during your marriage must be included in the calculation of family property to be shared when you separate. This is known as the Family Law Value.

You are not obligated to divide your pension. You and your former spouse, may choose to use other assets to equalize your obligations.

To learn more about ending a spousal relationship watch the broadcast here or below. 

Should I pay for my leave?

While you are on an approved leave, you will not be collecting an income from your employer, and not be contributing to your pension.

That break from contributing might mean you have to work longer or maybe you'll retire with a smaller pension. Paying for your leave makes up for the time you were away. 

To learn more about paying for a leave watch the broadcast here or below.

When should I begin collecting CPP?

This is a very personal decision, but there are some general guidelines. 

If your expenses will be high during your early retirement years, consider collecting a pension early from the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). By starting a reduced CPP retirement pension early, you may receive it for a longer period of time.

If you decide to wait until 65 to start collecting CPP, you'll receive more each month.

To learn more about CPP and your pension watch the broadcast here or below.

What happens to my pension if I pass away?

If you’re a certified teacher in Ontario and working for a participating employer, you’re a member of Ontario Teachers’. This means in the event of your death your loved ones would be entitled to pre-retirement death benefits. 

To learn more about your death benefits, visit our Planning for Loved Ones section, watch the broadcast here or below. 

What do I need to know about my Statement of Pension Benefits?

Once a year we'll send you a statement that reflects what you've earned in the pension plan so far. This is called your Personal Statement of Benefits, or PSOB.

Your statement is a snapshot in time. For the most up-to-date experience, stay signed in after you review your statement and check out all your Ontario Teachers' online account has to offer. You can find your full service record, and use the Pension Calculator to see more retirement projections. 

To learn more about your Statement of Pension Benefits, check out this "What's New" story, watch the broadcast here or below.