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Leaving the plan

February 28, 2018

Sometimes we have a change in plans and we end up taking a different course than the one we initially set out on.

Maybe teaching isn’t what you expected. Maybe you’re considering moving to a different province. Or maybe a different career sparked your interest.

We hosted a Facebook Live broadcast to give you the lowdown on what you need to know if you’re thinking about leaving the plan. Here are the answers to your FAQs:

Q: What happens to my pension if I want to leave teaching in Ontario to teach in another province?

A: First, ask yourself if you think this move will be permanent. If yes, we have transfer agreements with teachers’ plans in other provinces. Most teachers in this situation can transfer their credit into their new employer’s plan.

If you think you’ll likely return to Ontario and resume teaching here, you may wish to leave your credit in the plan. When you return, consider transferring any credit you earned while away into the plan.

Q: If I leave teaching long before I’m ready to retire, when can I collect my pension?

A: If you stop working in education before you’re eligible to collect a pension, you have three options:

1.       leave your benefits in the plan to collect as a pension when you reach retirement age. You can collect a reduced                pension as early as age 50;

2.       transfer the commuted value of your pension to another retirement savings arrangement; or

3.       transfer your pension credit to another pension plan with which we have a transfer agreement.

Q: If I leave teaching early, can I transfer my pension to my spouse who is also a teacher?

A: No. Your credit and contributions are based on your employment in education and can't be transferred to another person.

Q: If I quit, should I take my pension’s commuted value or leave it in the plan?

A: That depends on your personal situation. If you choose to take the commuted value, you’ll have to put it into a locked-in retirement savings arrangement. If you leave it in the plan, you can collect a reduced pension as early as 50.