To OMERS Members and Stakeholders -
Ensuring the OMERS Plan stays healthy and sustainable is a responsibility which we take very seriously. As part of this responsibility, the OMERS Sponsors Corporation Board (SC Board) revisits the Plan’s design every year, reflecting our ongoing commitment to you to uphold the pension promise.
On June 24, 2020 the SC Board approved five amendments that were considered as part of the 2020 Plan Review.
Due to the exceptional circumstances surrounding COVID-19, the following changes were passed:
Extending leave purchase deadlines
Extends the deadline to complete a leave purchase by one year for members who return from a leave of absence in 2020 or 2021 (i.e., extending to December 31, 2022, or December 31, 2023, depending on the return date). This change is effective immediately and will be implemented over the coming weeks.
Reducing or eliminating the 36-month employment requirement for purchases of periods of reduced pay
Reduces or eliminates the 36-month employment requirement for purchases of periods of reduced pay, subject to changes to the Income Tax Regulations. This change is effective immediately but will only be implemented if and when the employment requirement under the Income Tax Regulations is amended.
Permitting temporary layoffs as purchasable service
Allows members to purchase credited service for periods of absence due to temporary layoff that were initiated in 2020 or 2021. The service can be purchased at two times contributions (member only). This change is effective immediately and will be implemented over the coming weeks.
More information about these amendments is available here.
In accordance with the 2020 Plan Review, the following two amendments were also passed:
Removes the current eligibility requirement for non-full-time employees to join the Plan so that all non-full-time employees may elect to join the Plan at any time. Enrolment in the Plan would take effect on the first day of the month after the employee’s election is received and would remain in place as long as the member continues working with their current employer.
This change is effective January 1, 2023, which means that until then, the current eligibility requirement continues to apply.
Shared Risk Indexing
Provides the option for the SC Board, based on its annual assessment of the Plan’s health and viability, to reduce future inflation increases on benefits earned after December 31, 2022.
This change is effective January 1, 2023 and does not affect benefits earned before that date. This means that when you retire, the benefits earned on or before December 31, 2022 will be granted full indexation. Benefits earned on or after January 1, 2023 will be subject to Shared Risk Indexing, meaning that the level of indexation will depend on the SC Board’s annual assessment of the financial health of the Plan.
These changes will become effective on January 1, 2023. Until we have had a chance to properly update the OMERS website, this dedicated 2020 Plan Review website will remain publicly available to provide an information resource for our community. It was used to provide updates and answer member questions throughout our four-month engagement period and I encourage you to explore it.
As part of our commitment to keep members, employers and stakeholders informed, more information regarding all of these amendments will be shared closer to their respective implementation dates on our website.
The OMERS Sponsors Corporation (SC) Board is responsible for the health and viability of the Plan into the future and is considering...