Prior Plan Deferred Teachers

A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher is one who:
  • ceased teaching in Saskatchewan before July 1, 1991;
  • retained an interest in the Annuity Fund on June 30, 1991;
  • does not return to teaching in Saskatchewan under contract for at least 60 consecutive working days or for at least 1 year of contributory service after June 30, 1991; and
  • does not receive benefits from the ICP for at least 60 consecutive working days or for at least 1 year of Income Continuance Service after June 30, 1991.

In the event a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher returns to teaching in Saskatchewan and receives credit for at least 60 days of Teaching Service or completes at least 10 months of Contributory Service after June 30, 1991, or receives credit for at least 60 consecutive days or 10 months of Contributory Service or Income Continuance Plan Service after June 30, 1991, such individuals shall be classified as a Teacher instead of a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher.

Retirement Pension

A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher with 1 year of contributory service may apply for and receive a retirement pension any time after attaining age 55 and before attaining age 71. If the service component is achieved by June 30, and the teacher will be reaching the appropriate age before December 31 of that year, the teacher will be eligible for the allowance on July 1. If the teacher does not wish to retire effective July 1 and renders teaching service in the fall term and then ceases to teach, the teacher is not eligible for retirement until the teacher satisfies the age requirement.

The amount will be based on the contributions plus interest to the teacher’s credit in the Annuity Plan.

Withdrawal Privileges

Less Than 10 Years of Contributory Service

A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher may decide anytime prior to retirement to:

  1. receive a lump sum refund of teacher contributions, plus interest (a refund of teacher contributions and interest will represent the full satisfaction of the teacher’s entitlement to receive a benefit from the Plan); or
  2. transfer teacher and employer contributions, plus interest, to a locked-in retirement account or an insurance company licensed to issue life annuities.

Ten or More Years of Contributory Service

A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher who has completed 10 years of contributory service may transfer teacher and employer contributions, plus interest, to a locked-in retirement account or an insurance company licensed to issue life annuities.

Reinstatement Privileges

A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher who received a lump sum refund may reinstate service accumulated at the time of the refund by contributing the amount refunded, plus interest, as determined by the Plan and as permitted under the Income Tax Act. The teacher can repay the complete refund and associated interest or repay the portion of refund for any year to which the refund applies provided they meet the return service provisions. Only Prior Plan Deferred Teachers not affected by lock-in provisions are eligible for a refund.

Please note that the amount of return service for the purpose of reinstating a refund and related service will be 20 teaching days under contract with a Participating Employer of the STRP.

Those who choose to transfer to a locked-in retirement account or an insurance company have no further rights or entitlements under the Plan and no right of reinstatement. A Prior Plan Deferred Teacher who has no further entitlements under the Plan and who returns to teaching is considered to be a teacher new to teaching in Saskatchewan.

Survivor Benefits

Death Prior to Retirement

When a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher dies prior to retirement, the surviving spouse has the following options:

  1. Receive a Spouse’s Allowance

    The spouse may receive an allowance based on the contributions, plus interest, to the teacher’s credit at the time of the teacher’s death.

    If the spouse’s allowance terminates before the aggregate of the allowances paid to the spouse total an amount equal to the Prior Plan Deferred Teacher’s contributions, plus interest, at the time of death, then the difference is paid to the designated beneficiary or estate.

  2. Receive a Benefit Pay-Out

    The employee and employer contributions plus interest to the teacher’s credit at the time of death are available to the spouse if a survivor allowance is not selected. The surviving spouse is entitled to transfer the funds to a registered pension plan, locked-in retirement account, an insurance company licensed to issue life annuities, non-locked-in RRSP or lump sum cash refund.

    If a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher dies without a spouse, the employee contributions and interest as well as the government contributions and interest to the teacher’s credit at the time of death shall be paid to the designated beneficiary or estate.

    Transfers/payments under this subsection, will represent the full satisfaction of the spouses or beneficiaries entitlement from the Plan.

Benefit from Voluntary Contributions

If a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher dies before retirement, the teacher’s voluntary contributions, plus interest, shall be paid to the designated beneficiary or estate. (If the funds are locked-in, the terms of the lock-in agreement apply.)

Death After Retirement

Since the STRP falls under The Pension Benefits Act, 1992, Saskatchewan, the surviving spouse of record must be the spouse at the date of retirement (not the date of death). A person who becomes the spouse of a teacher after the teacher’s retirement is not entitled to a survivor benefit in the event of the teacher’s death.

When a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher dies after retirement and is in receipt of an allowance from the Plan, the following survivor benefits shall be paid Spouse’s Allowance.

The Prior Plan Deferred Teacher’s spouse at the date of retirement receives 60% of the allowance that the teacher was receiving at the time of death.

If the allowances payable to the Prior Plan Deferred Teacher and the spouse terminate before the aggregate of such allowances total the contributions plus interest at the retirement date of the Prior Plan Deferred Teacher, then the difference is paid to the designated beneficiary or estate.

If a Prior Plan Deferred Teacher dies without a spouse, the difference between the aggregate of the allowances paid to the Prior Plan Deferred Teacher and the amount of the Prior Plan Deferred Teacher’s contributions, and interest, at the date of retirement, shall be paid to the designated beneficiary or estate.

Spousal Waiver of Survivor Benefit

Spousal Waiver of Pre-Retirement Survivor Benefit

A teacher’s spouse may waive the right to receive the commuted value or the 60% spousal allowance if eligible where the teacher dies before retirement. The teacher’s spouse may revoke the waiver any time prior to the death of the teacher by delivering a signed notice of revocation to the STRP.

If a teacher and their spouse determine waiving the pre-retirement survivor benefit is the correct thing for them to do, a pre-retirement spousal waiver must be obtained from the STRP. The original form must be completed and submitted to the STRP.

In the event a spousal waiver is signed, the member can name other beneficiaries for the pre-retirement lump sum benefit.

Spousal Waiver of Post-Retirement Survivor Benefit

A teacher’s spouse may waive the right to receive the 60% spousal allowance where the teacher dies after retirement.

If a teacher and their spouse determine waiving the post-retirement survivor benefit is the correct thing for them to do, a post-retirement spousal waiver must be obtained from the STRP. The original must be completed and submitted to the STRP no more than 90 days prior to the pension commencement.

In the event a post-retirement spousal waiver is signed, the member can name other beneficiaries for any benefits that could be payable in accordance with the STRP Plan Text to a designated beneficiary who is not a spouse.

Spousal waivers are an optional feature of the Plan. Before making such a decision it is wise to seek legal advice regarding the effect of such a waiver.

Small Benefit Pay-Out

If the annual allowance payable to a teacher does not exceed 4% of the YMPE for the year the Plan deems entitlement to have occurred, or the commuted value of the retirement allowance is less than 20% of the YMPE for the year the Plan deems entitlement to have occurred, the Plan may pay the teacher a lump sum equal to the commuted value of the annual retirement allowance. If a small benefit pay-out has occurred, then the teacher has no further entitlements under the Plan and no right of reinstatement.

Transfer Deficiency Holdback

The Actuarial Valuation as at July 1, 2016 indicates the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Retirement Plan has a solvency ratio of 71.9 per cent. In accordance with The Pension Benefits Act, 1992, Saskatchewan and Section 28 of its Regulations, if a valuation reveals a solvency deficiency, a portion of the payment payable upon termination from the Plan must be held back. This is called a transfer deficiency. The amount of the transfer deficiency held back will be 28.1 per cent (100% - 71.9%) of the payment calculated at the final payout date. The amount held back will be paid out, including interest, at the end of the five year period following the date of the termination payment, or sooner, if the Plan becomes fully solvent before then.

If the transfer deficiency holdback dollar amount is less than 5 per cent of the Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE), the entire payment can be paid out. The YMPE is changed annually by Canada Revenue Agency.

Please note that the transfer deficiency holdback does not apply to the following payments:

  • refund of member contributions
  • refund of the 50 per cent excess contributions
  • death benefits
  • a pension benefit that is payable as a small benefit
  • members who will retire from the plan and commence a monthly pension
  • members who are retired