Prospective members of the public service pension plan
Are you thinking about joining the federal public service? As a federal public service employee, you may be eligible to join the public service pension plan. Knowing more about the plan will give you a better understanding of the compensation package offered to federal public service employees.
Listed below are some common questions that may be of interest to you as a potential public service employee. The answers link to more detailed information.
Who can become a member of the public service pension plan?
Generally, if you work for the federal public service, you accumulate pensionable service as a member of the pension plan if:
- You are an indeterminate employee, hired to work an average of at least 12 hours a week. OR
- You are an employee, hired for more than 6 months to work an average of at least 12 hours a week. OR
- You are an employee, hired at first for 6 months or less to work an average of at least 12 hours a week, and have worked for more than 6 continuous months.
What would your pension plan include?
Your Pension at a Glance provides a summary of what the plan offers.
Consult Public service pension plan for more information on how the public service pension plan works.
How would your pension be calculated?
Your public service pension would be calculated based on your age when you retire, your years of pensionable service (maximum of 35 years) and your average salary for the 5 consecutive years of highest paid service. Learn more about your retirement income sources and see the how to calculate your pension.
After you retire, would your pension be protected from inflation?
Yes. Your pension ensures Protection from Inflation from losing its value as a result of inflation or increases in the cost of living for the rest of your life.
Who pays into the public service pension plan?
Both you and your employer would contribute a certain percentage of your salary to the pension plan. The contribution rates for current service may change annually. For more information on this topic, visit Pensionable Service.
How are contributions to public service pension plan managed and where is the money invested?
PSP Investments manages the contributions in a variety of investments. For more information on the financial management of the pension plan, visit Pension Plan Funding, Investments, Accounting and Reporting.
What type of previous employment count as pensionable service under the public service pension plan?
You may be able to buy back several types of prior service such as:
- Prior service within and outside of the federal public service
- Service with the Canadian Forces
- Service with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police
How can you increase your public service pension if you were previously employed outside the federal public service?
If you were a member of a pension plan with your former employer, there are ways of increasing your pension under the public service pension plan. You have two options:
- Buy back of eligible prior service.
- Transfer pensionable service from your former pension plan to the public service pension plan. Your former employer must have Pension Transfer Agreements with the federal government. If not, your former employer may be able to negotiate one.
Note: You must decide to use these options within a certain time limit, once you become a member of the public service pension plan.
Would your family members be protected in the event of your death?
If you have 2 or more years of pensionable service to your credit, your family is protected under your pension plan in the event of your death. Your eligible survivors and eligible children may be entitled to a survivor benefit and a child allowance. In addition, a Supplementary Death Benefit will be payable as a lump-sum to your designated beneficiary or to your estate.
If you have less than two years of pensionable service to your credit, your eligible survivors or estate is entitled to a return of your contributions with interest.
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