Once you become vested, you have a permanent right to your pension. If you leave Covered Employment before becoming vested, even if you have earned Pension Credits, you may not ever be able to collect your pension unless you later return to Covered Employment. (See Breaks in Service.)

In addition to the rules below, you must be an Active Participant in the Plan before you can become Vested. (See Active Participation.)

You receive one Year of Vesting Service for each full Pension Credit you receive.

Determining When You Become Vested: (Beginning January 1, 1976 and After)*
If your last hour of Covered Employment was on or after January 1st, 1999:
You become vested once you have completed five Years of Vesting Service.
OR
You become vested once you reach “Normal Retirement Age” while in Covered Employment.
If you reach age 65 while still in Covered Employment before earning five Years of Vesting Service,
you will become vested when you reach “Normal Retirement Age,” which is the fifth anniversary of your Plan Participation.
(Participation before January 1, 1988 does not count towards the above “Normal Retirement Age” rule.)
If your last hour of Covered Employment was before January 1st, 1999*:
You become vested once you have completed ten Years of Vesting Service.
OR
You become vested once you reach “Normal Retirement Age” while in Covered Employment.
If you reach age 65 while still in Covered Employment before earning ten Years of Vesting Service,
you will become vested when you reach “Normal Retirement Age,” which is the tenth anniversary of your Plan Participation.

*See Vesting requirements for members who retired prior to 1976.

Vesting Exceptions And Qualifications

Initial Participation

If you completed at least nine consecutive months of Covered Employment during the Calendar Year in which you became an Active Participant, you will receive one Year of Vesting Service for this Calendar Year, even if you did not otherwise earn a full Pension Credit. This only applies upon initial participation or following a return to Covered Employment after a Break-in-Service.

Non-Covered Employment with a Contributing Employer

If you work for an Employer that contributes to the Plan – but in a job which is not covered by the Plan – and your job immediately comes before or immediately comes after a period of Covered Employment with that same Employer, your hours of continuous non-Covered Employment will count toward your Years of Vesting Service. This also applies if you work in a department of the Employer not covered by the Pension Fund that later becomes covered.

This rule does not count towards the earning of Pension Credits or apply to Covered Employment before January 1st, 1976. For the purposes of this rule, employment in a “job not covered by the Plan” includes a period of employment during which you have elected not to participate in the Plan, as permitted by the Collective Bargaining Agreement.