Eligibility, timelines and paying for credit
How do I know if I’m eligible
You can transfer your pension credit from your previous plan to the PSPP if:
- There's a transfer agreement between the PSPP and your previous plan
- You qualify and apply for a transfer within certain time limits
- Your pension credit is still in the previous plan
Time limits for purchasing or transferring credit
Within six months of joining the PSPP – If you belonged to a pension plan that’s covered under the Major Ontario Pension Plans (MOPPs) agreement, you may be able to transfer any pension credit you still have in that plan into the PSPP. However, you must apply for the transfer within six months of joining the PSPP.
Within 12 months of joining the PSPP – If you belonged to a pension plan that has a reciprocal transfer agreement with the PSPP, you may be able to transfer pension credit you still have in that plan into the PSPP. However, you must apply for the transfer within 12 months of joining the PSPP.
Within 24 months of joining the PSPP – You may also be able to buy pension credit in the PSPP for certain eligible periods of past employment or pension credit that is not covered by a transfer agreement. You can buy back credit at any time, but it typically costs less to buy it back within 24 months of joining the PSPP (and the cost of buying pension credit increases over time).
If you’re considering a reciprocal transfer agreement (RTA), read Transferring pension credit into the PSPP (PDF) or contact us to discuss your options after starting with your new employer.
Note: If you are looking to reinstate pension credit related to a lump-sum benefit you withdrew from the PSPP or the OPSEU Pension Plan, please read this section.
What if I’m not eligible to transfer credit?
If you don’t qualify to transfer credit or if there was no agreement with your previous employer, you may have other options available. You may be able to buy back some or all of your service. This credit will be added to your credit in the PSPP.
What is a "top up"?
If you’re moving ahead with transferring credit, your previous employer will move the value of your pension credit in their pension plan over to the PSPP. The amount available for transfer from the prior plan may not be enough to provide an equivalent amount of credit in the PSPP. If that happens, you will have what we call a shortfall. A shortfall may occur if, for example, you have a higher salary or better pension benefits as a PSPP member. If there is a shortfall and you want to establish full PSPP pension credit for the period of time you worked for your previous employer, you will have the option to make a top up payment.