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Invest in the OMERS Fund with AVCs: Changes to AVC Program Offer More Flexibility for Members


OMERS Sponsors Corporation (SC) recently approved changes to Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs). The changes provide more flexibility for participants and will give OMERS employers the option to offer payroll deductions for AVCs.

AVCs are part of the OMERS Primary Pension Plan, but are separate from the OMERS defined benefit pension. You must be a member of the OMERS Plan to contribute to an AVC account.

Funds in an AVC account are invested in the $55 billion OMERS Fund, giving participants access to OMERS globally diverse asset mix.

Transfers from RRSPs, LIRAs and Other Registered Retirement Vehicles Available Year-Round

Effective January 1, 2013, lump-sum transfers to an Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVC) account will be allowed any time throughout the year. Previously, lump-sum transfers could only be made during the annual January 1 to April 30 transfer window.

The elimination of the window provides members the opportunity to transfer funds when they become available throughout the year. OMERS Plan members up to age 70 can transfer funds to an AVC account from a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP), locked-in retirement account (LIRA), registered pension plan, or deferred profit sharing plan.

Note: This change does not affect the March/April AVC withdrawal window.

Changes to Contribution Options for Active Members

  • Catch-up payments for automatic contributions
    • Automatic contributions are withdrawn via pre-authorized debit on a bi-weekly or monthly basis. Currently, members cannot make up missed payments. Effective July 1, 2013, a member will be allowed to make a lump-sum catch-up payment within set limits.
  • Employer payroll deductions
    • Effective January 2014, OMERS employers can choose to offer payroll deductions for AVCs.
Automatic contributions are withdrawn via pre-authorized debit on a bi-weekly or monthly basis. Currently, members cannot make up missed payments. Effective July 1, 2013, a member will be allowed to make a lump-sum catch-up payment within set limits.

Details about catch-up payments and employer payroll deductions will be provided later in 2013.

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