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Pension SPD

BOSTON PLASTERERS', CEMENT MASONS' AND ASPHALT LAYERS'
LOCAL NO. 534


PENSION PLAN
SUMMARY PLAN DESCRIPTION


2007 Edition




BOSTON PLASTERERS', CEMENT MASONS' AND ASPHALT LAYERS'
LOCAL NO. 534
PENSION PLAN
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124
Telephone: (617) 825-4500



BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Employer Trustees:
Thomas S. Gunning, Chairman
David C. Smith
Stephen P. Affanato

Union Trustees:
Harry C. Brousaides, Secretary/Treasurer
Vincent DiSalvo


Administrator
Mary T. Keohan


LEGAL COUNSEL
Krakow & Souris, LLC

CONSULTANTS AND ACTUARIES
The Segal Company

AUDITORS FOR THE PLAN
Campbell & DeVasto Associates, CPA



IMPORTANT
Only the full Board of Trustees is authorized to interpret the Plan of Benefits described in this Summary Plan Description (SPD). No employer or any union, nor any individual Trustee, nor any representative of any employer or Local Union/District Council is authorized to interpret this Plan nor can such person act as an agent of the Board of Trustees.

This booklet is a brief general description written in non-technical language of the most important provisions of the Pension Plan. Nothing in this Summary Plan Description is meant to interpret, extend or change in any way the provisions expressed in the complete text of the Pension Plan as adopted by the Trustees.

The Trustees have full discretionary authority to interpret and construe the terms of the Plan and Trust, including provisions describing eligibility for and amount of benefits.

If a question arises regarding eligibility, amount or form of benefits, vesting or Pension Credits with respect to periods prior to the publishing of this booklet, the answer will depend upon the provisions of the Plan in effect at the time you last worked in covered employment under the Plan.

Pension benefits are subject to income taxes and may be subject to other taxes. The amounts payable under the Plan are before any deductions required by law and may not be the net amount receivable by the pensioner and/or his beneficiary.


September 1, 2007

TO ALL PARTICIPANTS:

We are pleased to present you with this booklet describing the most important features of your Pension Plan. We urge you to read this booklet carefully. If you are married, please share it with your spouse. Keep the booklet in a safe place and let your family know where you keep it.

As you read this booklet, it is important to remember that unless it is clearly stated to the contrary, this booklet describes the restated Plan in effect as of April 1, 2001, including several subsequent plan amendments. If you left Covered Employment prior to that date, your rights and benefits will be determined by the Plan in effect as of the date you last worked in Covered Employment.

If you have any questions or need additional information regarding the Plan or your pension rights and benefits, please call or write the Fund Office. The Board of Trustees or, if expressly authorized, the Fund Office will provide an answer in writing.

The Pension Plan plays an important role in your retirement security and we are proud to be involved in its continued operation.


Sincerely yours,

The BOARD OF TRUSTEES


IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER

Save this booklet. Put it in a safe place.

Tell your family, particularly your spouse, about this booklet and where you keep it.

If you lose your copy, you can ask the Fund Office for another.

If you have worked in employment covered by the Plan and have earned five Vesting Credits or more, and you are leaving without definite plans to return in the near future, you may be entitled to a Deferred Pension, payable when you have reached retirement age. Different vesting rules apply if you did not work one hour in Covered Employment after April 1, 1998. See Section 3 for more information. To protect your benefit rights for later on, call or write the Fund Office. Arrangements will be made to furnish you with a statement of your benefit rights. In that case, the Fund will also file notice with the government so that the Social Security Administration can remind you at a future time of your deferred pension rights.

If you leave employment covered by the Plan to go into military service, you may be entitled to credit for that time, provided you return to your job promptly after your discharge. Also, be sure to notify the Fund Office promptly upon your return.

Notify the Fund Office promptly if you change your address. This is important so the Trustees can keep you informed about the Plan. If you are a Pensioner, this will ensure timely receipt of your monthly pension benefit.

When you are employed outside of Local 534's jurisdiction, please notify Local 534's Fund Office so that arrangements may be made for the transfer of hours from those areas where reciprocal agreements are in effect.



TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. DEFINITIONS

2. PARTICIPATION

3. EARNING YOUR PENSION BENEFIT

4. CANCELLATION OF PENSION AND VESTING CREDIT

5. CALCULATION OF BENEFITS

6. TYPES OF PENSIONS, ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS, AND AMOUNTS

7. YOUR PENSION PAYMENT OPTIONS

8. DEATH BENEFITS FOR ACTIVE EMPLOYEES

9. RETURNING TO WORK AFTER RETIREMENT

10. APPLYING FOR BENEFITS

11. APPEAL PROCESS

12. FUTURE OF THE PLAN

13. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

14. PLAN INFORMATION

15. YOUR RIGHTS UNDER ERISA



1. DEFINITIONS

The following are general definitions of terms used in explaining the Boston Plasterers', Cement Masons', and Asphalt Layers' Local No. 534 Pension Plan (the "Plan"). Throughout this booklet, whenever the masculine gender is used, it includes the feminine. Benefit Commencement Date

Benefit Commencement Date is the date your pension is effective. Generally, the Benefit Commencement Date is the first day of the month after you have filed a completed application for benefits with the Fund Office and fulfilled all the requirements to be eligible to retire and receive a pension benefit.

Break in Continuity

A Break in Continuity will occur if you fail to earn at least one-half of a Vesting Credit in a period of three consecutive Plans Years. Unless certain conditions are met, a Break in Continuity can cause the loss of previously earned Pension Credits and Vesting Credits. Detailed explanations of what causes a Break in Continuity, what can make it permanent and how breaks can be repaired are in Section 4.

Break in Service

A Break in Service will occur if you fail to complete 500 hours of service in a Plan Year.

Covered Employment

Covered Employment means work performed while employed by a Contributing Employer in a job classification covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement that requires contributions to be made to this Fund on your behalf. Covered Employment also means work that requires contributions to the Pension Fund by an Employer under a written agreement with the Pension fund.

Employee

Employee means an individual who is employed by an Employer required to make contributions to the Fund on their behalf under a collective bargaining agreement or some other agreement with the Fund. Employee does not include a partner or proprietor of an unincorporated business. Employee does not include leased employees.

Normal Retirement Date (NRD)

Normal Retirement Date means the latest of the date an Employee:

  1. Completes ten Vesting Credits or, for an Employee who has earned any credit after April 1, 1998, five Vesting Credits (or the fifth anniversary of his participation in the Plan if earlier);
  2. Retires from work within the craft jurisdiction of the Union in the geographic area covered by the Plan; or
  3. Reaches age 65.

Participant

Participant means any Employee working in Covered Employment who has met the eligibility requirements for participation. The term Participant also includes an Employee who has established a vested right to benefits, whether or not active, and any other person who is receiving or entitled to receive a pension from the Plan.

Pension Credit

Pension Credit means the total of an Employee's Past Pension Credit and Future Pension Credit as described in Section 3 of this booklet.

Plan Year

Plan Year shall mean the 12-month period beginning each April 1st and ending on March 31st.

Spouse

Spouse means a person to whom the Employee is lawfully married, as the term is defined under the federal Defense of Marriage Act, as a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife.

Vesting Credit

Vesting Credit means the credit you earn for each Plan Year in which you worked at least 1,000 hours of service. A partial year of Vesting Credit is earned if less than 1,000 hours are worked, as described in Section 3. Vesting Credits are used to determine your vesting status under the Plan.

Vested Status

Vested Status means that you have achieved a 100% non-forfeitable right to a retirement benefit under the Plan.

2. PARTICIPATION

You become eligible to participate in the Plan when you complete one hour of service in covered employment.

3. EARNING YOUR PENSION BENEFIT

Your work is measured for pension purposes in two ways: (1) in Pension Credits and (2) in Vesting Credits. You will receive credit for service prior to April, 1962 with an employer who later became a contributing employer or for your length of continuous service in Local 534 prior to April 1, 1962, whichever is greater.

Pension Credits

The amount of your pension is determined in part by the number of Pension Credits you earned. There are two (2) types of Pension Credit:

  1. Past Pension Credit for work prior to the Contribution Period; and
  2. Future Pension Credit for work during the Contribution Period
Members in the Local 10 Plan will not be eligible to receive Pension Credits for periods prior to July 1, 1995. They may be entitled however, to Vesting Credits for periods prior to July 1, 1995. How they can become eligible for Vesting Credits is explained at the end of this section.

Past Pension Credit (Before the Contribution Period)

You will receive credit for service prior to April, 1962 with an employer who later became a contributing employer or for your length of continuous service in Local 534 prior to April 1, 1962, whichever is greater.

Hours of Service per Plan Year Pension Credit
Less than 275 .00 (0)
275 - 549 .25 (1/4)
550 - 824 .50 (1/2)
825 - 1,099 .75 (3/4)
1,100 or more 1.00 (1)
For example, if you work 825 hours but less than 1,100 hours in a Plan Year, the amount of Pension Credit you earned would be ¾ of a Pension Credit. If you work 1,100 hours or more hours, you will receive one Pension Credit. Any hours in Covered Employment you work in excess of 1,500 hours in a Plan Year will be banked in your Employee’s Hours Bank as described below.

Crediting Hours of Service for Non Work Periods

In addition to receiving Pension Credits as a result of hours worked, Pension Credits may also be awarded for certain periods when you are unable to work due to sickness or accident and during which period you received benefits either under Local 534's Health and Welfare Plan or from the Workers' Compensation carrier of a contributing employer.

Disability Under the Local 534 Health and Welfare Plan

If you receive accident and sickness benefits under the Local 534’s Health and Welfare Plan, you will be credited with six (6) hours per day up to 30 hours per week for up to 39 weeks for each period of disability, to a maximum of 1,100 hours per Plan Year, provided the Trustees receive proof of continued disability.

Worker’s Compensation Benefits

If you receive Worker’s Compensation benefits while working for a contributing employer, you will be credited with six (6) hours per day up to 30 hours per week , to a maximum of 1,100 hours per Plan Year, provided the Trustees receive proof of continued disability. There is a 104-week lifetime maximum.

Military Service Credit

If you enter military service while a Participant in the Plan, you will be credited with six (6) hours of service per day up to 30 hours per week, to a maximum of 1,100 hours per Plan Year for active duty in the armed forces of the United States, to a maximum of five (5) years of Pension Credit and Vesting Credit in accordance with the rules of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act provided you meet the following:

  • your military service is qualified military service and you returned to Covered Employment on or after December 12, 1994 and your discharge was not dishonorable; and
  • you make yourself available for Covered Employment within 90 days following the later of your discharge or your recovery from a disability received while you were in the military.

Family Medical Leave Act

You may also receive six (6) hours per day, up to 30 hours per week for a total of up to 500 hours of service for a period of maternity or paternity leave to prevent a break in service.

Employee’s Hours Bank

In order to compensate for changes in employment opportunities that occur from year to year, you may also store extra hours you work in excess of 1,500 hours during any Plan Year in your Hours Bank. In order to have these hours applied to your Pension and Vesting Credits, you must be actively at work or actively seeking employment, and have worked at least 275 hours during a Plan Year. Extra hours stored in your Hours Bank may be used in the following ways:

  • To increase your Pension Credits during those years when less than 1,100 hours are reported on your behalf. If the number of hours earned in the Plan Year plus the number of hours in your Hours Bank does not equal 1,100, the number of hours withdrawn from your Hours Bank shall not exceed the number needed for a partial Pension Credit.
  • Whenever possible, a sufficient number of hours shall be withdrawn from the Hours Bank to credit you with one full Vesting Credit.
  • To add additional Pension Credits to your Benefit at your retirement or death. Effective April 1, 1991, if you are actively employed at the time of your retirement or death, any unused hours in your Bank shall be converted to Pension Credits at the rate of one-quarter (¼) credit of a Pension Credit for each 275 Hours in the Bank and added to your total Pension Credits earned at the time of your retirement or death. Excess hours not used at the time you incur a Break in Continuity will be dissolved.

Vesting Credits and Achieving Vested Status

Vested Status

Attaining vested status means that you have a 100% non-forfeitable right to your pension benefit and can receive it once you meet the plans eligibility rules for retirement. After April 1, 1998, if you work an hour of service in covered employment, you will be 100% vested after earning five (5) Vesting Credits. You are also 100% vested upon attaining Normal Retirement Age. If you have not worked since 1998 and are a collectively bargained employee, you need ten (10) Vesting Credits to become vested.

Vesting Credits are used to determine your non-forfeitable right to a pension benefit. You earn Vesting Credits as follows:

Hours of Service per Plan Year Vesting Credit
Less than 275 .00 (0)
275 - 549 .25 (1/4)
550 - 824 .50 (1/2)
825 - 999 .75 (3/4)
1,000 or more 1.00 (1)

For example, if you work between 825 and 999 hours each Plan Year, you will earn .75 Vesting Credits each Plan Year. It will take you 7 years to become vested under the Plan (.75 Vesting Credits x 7 years = 5.25 Vesting Credits) because you worked less than 1,000 hours each Plan Year. If you work 1,200 hours each year, it will take you 5 years to become fully vested (1.00 Vesting Credit x 5 years = 5 Vesting Credits).

Special Vesting Rules

Members of the Local No. 10 Plan

A member of the Plasterers Local 10 Pension Plan will be credited with Vesting Credits for each year of service he earned in the Local 10 Plan between July 1, 1981 and June 30, 1995, provided he meets the following requirements:

  • He earned at least ¼ of a Pension Credit under the Local 10 Plan in the three years ended August 31, 1995; and
  • He earns at least ¼ of a Vesting Credit under the Local 534 Plan in the three years ending March 31, 1998.

No Pension Credits will be awarded for this period of time.

Taft-Hartley Members of Other Defined Benefit Plans

A new Participant in the Plan who was an active participant in another Taft-Hartley defined benefit pension plan in the trowel construction industry at the time he became a Participant in this Plan will be credited with Vesting Credits for each year of service (to a maximum of five) in the other construction industry defined benefit pension plan in which he was a Participant. The Trustees may request proof of participation and years of service. No Pension Credits will be awarded for this period of service.

4. CANCELLATION OF PENSION AND VESTING CREDIT

Break in Continuity Rule

Until you become vested in your benefit, it is possible to permanently lose any Pension Credits and Vesting Credits that you have already accumulated, if you are substantially unemployed or leave Covered Employment. Once you attain Normal Retirement Age or attain Vested Status, your Pension Credits and Vesting Credits will not be canceled.

Break in Continuity before April 1, 1976
  • You have incurred a Break in Continuity before April 1, 1976 if you had not accumulated at least ½ of a Vesting Credit in three consecutive Plan Years.
  • If you had a Break in Continuity before April 1, 1976, and if you have not attained your Normal Retirement Age or Vested Status, your Pension Credit and Vesting Credit earned prior to a Break in Continuity will cancelled. You will be given credit under the Plan only from the time you return to Covered Employment after that Break in Continuity.


Break in Continuity on or after April 1, 1976
  • You will incur a Break in Continuity on or after April 1, 1976 if you do not accumulate at least ½ of a Vesting Credit in any three consecutive Plan Years.
  • If you have not attained your Normal Retirement Age or Vested Status, your Pension Credit and Vesting Credit earned prior to a Break in Continuity will be cancelled. Pension Credit and Vesting Credit earned prior to a Break in Continuity can be restored if:
    • You earn at least 500 hours of service in a Plan Year after March 31, 1992, and
    • The number of consecutive Plan Years in which you do not earn 500 hours of Service is less than six (or your Vesting Credit, if greater).
  • Example:
    If you earn three Vesting Credits, then work less than 500 hours in four consecutive plan years after April 1, 1976, you can return to covered employment and work at least 500 hours and restore your previously earned Vesting Credits and Pension Credits. If you have 6 or more consecutive Breaks in Service, your previously earned Vesting Credits and Pension Credits will be permanently forfeited.

There are certain exceptions to the Break in Continuity rules. Grace periods may be granted for the following periods:

  • Up to eight consecutive calendar quarters if a Participant is unable to work in the trade because of total disability. Proof of total disability preventing the Participant from working as a plasterer, cement mason or asphalt layer must be provided to the Trustees;
  • Up to eight consecutive calendar quarters if a Participant is involuntarily unemployed. (This applies only in years for which hours reported decline by 30% from the hours reported during the prior year);
  • Employment outside the jurisdiction of Local 534 under the terms of a contract with an employer who is signatory to a bargaining agreement with a Plasterers', Cement Masons' and Asphalt Layers’ local union. If such employment is for more than one year, a Participant must return to Local 534's jurisdiction and earn two full Pension Credits and within six months of your return provide the Fund Office with the names and addresses of the other locals and the employers; or
  • If you were absent from work on a leave granted under the Family and Medical Leave Act, you may receive credit for hours of service you would otherwise have earned (to a maximum of twelve weeks).
These four exceptions constitute "grace periods" which are granted on a non-discriminatory basis by the Trustees. These periods will not add to your Pension or Vesting Credits, but will eliminate the application of the Break in Continuity rule during the specified grace periods. If you think you are entitled to a grace period for sickness or involuntary unemployment, you must notify the Trustees within one year following the period.

5. CALCULATION OF BENEFITS

The amount of your pension is based on the number of Pension Credits and Benefit Rate in effect at the time you retire or leave Covered Employment. As you work in Covered Employment, you earn service towards your eligibility for benefits and towards increasing the amount of your benefits. Your accrued benefit (payable at or after age 65 for your lifetime only) will be equal to:

  1. The Pension Credits you have earned during your last period of unbroken service multiplied by the appropriate Benefit Rate; plus
  2. Any other previously vested benefit to which you may be eligible under the Plan based on prior periods of Covered Employment (subject to appropriate benefit rate and maximums, which may have existed at those times).

If your initial retirement occurs on or after April 1, 2003, and

  • You had not incurred a Break in Continuity at that time, and
  • You had worked at least 275 hours in a Plan Year beginning April 1, 2002 or later,

the “Benefit Rate” applied to your last period of Covered Employment will be $95.00.

If your retirement occurs on or after April 1, 2003 but you do not meet either of the above conditions, your Benefit Rate will be an amount determined according to the following table for prior Pension Credits:

You Last Worked at least 275 Hours in Covered Employment in each of 3 Consecutive Plan Years And You Retired After: Your Benefit Rate is: And Your Maximum Pension Credit is:
4/1/1976 – 3/31/1981 4/1/1979 $11.00 30
4/1/1979 – 3/31/1985 4/1/1982 20.00 40
4/1/1983 – 3/31/1987 4/1/1986 25 45

You Last Worked at least 275 Hours in Covered Employment in One Plan Year And You Retired After: Your Benefit Rate is: And Your Maximum Pension Credit is:
4/1/1987 – 3/31/1988 4/1/1988 $30.00 Unlimited
4/1/1988 – 3/31/1989 4/1/1989 51.00 Unlimited
4/1/1989 – 3/31/1991 4/1/1990 55 Unlimited
4/1/1991 – 3/31/1993 4/1/1992 60 Unlimited
4/1/1993 – 3/31/1994 4/1/1994 66 Unlimited
4/1/1994 – 3/31/1996 4/1/1995 72 Unlimited
4/1/1996 – 3/31/1999 4/1/1997 80 Unlimited
4/1/1999 – 3/31/2000 4/1/2000 84 Unlimited
4/1/2000 – 3/31/2002 4/1/2001 90 Unlimited
4/1/2002 and thereafter 4/1/2003 95 Unlimited

Your retirement occurs when you stop earning credit for Covered Employment, submit a completed application for benefits and withdraw from Covered Employment.

The following examples may be helpful:

Employee A earns 35 Pension Credits and retires at age 65 on June 1, 2005. He has not incurred a Break in Continuity during that time. His accrued monthly pension is:

$95.00 x 35 Pension Credits = $3,325.00

Employee B earns 8 Pension Credits from April, 1984 through March, 1992. He then returns to Covered Employment in May, 1996 and earns 8 additional Pension Credits before he retires at age 65 on April 1, 2004. His first period of unbroken service is credited at the rate of $60.00 per Credit as that service does not qualify for a higher rate. His second period of service will therefore result from a calculation based on $95.00 times his 8 Pension Credits from his last period of Covered Employment, plus the $60.00 Benefit Rate times his 8 Credits earned during his first period. His accrued monthly pension at age 65 on April 1, 2004 is:

$60.00 x 8 Pension Credits = $480.00
$95.00 x 8 Pension Credits = $760.00
$1,240.00

Increases after Retirement

From time to time, the Trustees may find that the Benefit Rate can be increased. They have decided that as a matter of policy, benefits in pay status to retirees and beneficiaries shall, at the time of any Benefit Rate increase occurring after April 1, 1986, be increased by 20% of the active members' increase. The optional form of payments chosen will remain unchanged and any factors applicable to that option or for an early retirement benefit when it originally commenced will also apply at the time of the increase.

Remember, the fact that you have an accrued benefit does not necessarily mean you are entitled to pension payments. The eligibility requirements for benefits are outlined in the next section.

6. Types of Pensions, Eligibility Requirements, and Amounts

The Plan offers different types of pensions depending on your age, service and other factors. Each type of pension has its own eligibility and service requirements and may provide different levels of benefits.

In addition to the different types of pensions you may be eligible to receive, you may also elect several different optional forms of benefit payments offered by the Plan. These payment options, further described in Section 7, may provide for death benefits to a beneficiary, but can also affect the amount of your monthly benefit.

For single Employees, the normal form of benefit payment for all types of pensions under the Plan is a Single Life Annuity. All examples in this booklet, unless stated otherwise, use this form of payment. If you are married, the normal form of payment is a 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity further described in Section 7.

All examples, illustrations and estimates used in this section of the booklet as noted show the Single Life Annuity benefit amounts before adjustment for an alternative form of payment i.e., Joint and Survivor Options, Ten Year Certain and Continuous. All calculations are presented presuming an Employee qualifies for the current Benefit Rate, without a Break in Continuity or a Break in Service and presume that all application requirements have been satisfied.

The following are the different forms of Pension you can receive under this Plan:

Normal Retirement Pension

Eligibility

You will be eligible to retire on a Normal Retirement Pension on the first day of the month after you have reached your Normal Retirement Age (age 65 or completion of 5 years of participation in the Plan, if later) and are vested.

Pension Amount

The monthly amount of your Normal Retirement Pension depends on the Pension Credits you have accrued and the Benefit Rate in effect on the date you retire or leave service.

The current Benefit Rate is $95 for each Pension Credit you earn provided you worked at least 275 hours in Covered Employment in a Plan Year beginning April 1, 2002 or later. Please refer to Section 5 for a more detailed explanation.

Working Beyond Normal Retirement Age

You may work outside the Mason, Plaster, and Asphalt trade after normal retirement age and not affect your eligibility for a pension. In such a case, you may start receiving your benefits when you reach Normal Retirement Age. You also have the option of delaying your application. If you delay your application, your pension may be actuarially increased under certain conditions (See the explanation below). However, if you are entitled to a Normal Retirement Pension, you must begin receiving payments no later than the April 1st following the year in which you reach age 70½. If you are still working beyond age 70½, your benefit will be increased to reflect the extra credit earned.

You may also continue to work in Covered Employment beyond your Normal Retirement Age (or return to Covered Employment if you already retired – See Section 9 for more information on Suspension of Benefit Rules). However, your benefits will be suspended during this period of employment. You will continue to accrue Pension Credits under the Plan. The amount of your Pension when you actually retire will be equal to the following, whichever will provide you with the highest benefit:

  • The amount of your benefit determined as of your Benefit Commencement Date, based on the amount and value of your Pension Credits earned as of that date; or
  • The amount of your benefit determined as of your Normal Retirement Age, based on your Pension Credits and the value of them earned as of that date, but actuarially increased for each month between your Normal Retirement Date and your Benefit Commencement Date. The amount of the monthly increase is described in the next paragraph.

Adjustment of Benefit for Late Retirement

If your Benefit Commencement Date is after your Normal Retirement Age (age 65), and you were not working in disqualifying employment (in the trade), or your benefits were not suspended because you continued to work in the Covered Employment, your monthly benefit will be increased to take into account your late retirement date – in other words, for each month when you were eligible to receive your pension benefit, but did not receive payments. The amount of increase in your benefit is 1% per month for the first 60 months after Normal Retirement Age and 1.5% per month for each month thereafter.

Example:

Jeff stops working in the Cement Masons’ industry at age 61. However, he does not apply for benefits until he is age 67. He accrued 25 Pension Credits and qualifies for the $95.00 Benefit Rate (the rate effect when he last worked in covered employment).

Step 1: Determine the monthly Normal Retirement Benefit:*

$95.00 x 25 Pension Credits = $2,375.00

Step 2: Determine the actuarial increase:

  Number of months between age 65 and age 67 = 24 months

24 x 1% = 24%

$2,375.00 x 24% = $570.00

Step 3: Calculate the total Monthly Normal Retirement Benefit payable on Jeff’s delayed retirement date:

$2,375.00 + $570.00 = $2,945.00

* Assumes a Single Life Annuity only payment method with no benefits continuing to a Beneficiary.

Early Retirement Pension

You may be eligible for early retirement benefits if you are not yet 65.

  • Eligibility

    You will be eligible to retire on an Early Retirement Pension if you have attained age 55, have accumulated at least 10 Vesting Credits, and have accrued at least five Future Pension Credits. You may start to receive your benefits on the first day of the month after you retire.

  • Pension Amount

    It is important to note that if you choose to retire on an Early Retirement Pension, the amount of your monthly benefit will be less than your Normal Retirement Pension. When you retire early, your benefit is reduced because you are younger when your monthly pension payments begin (that is, younger than age 65), and you are expected to receive a greater number of monthly payments during your lifetime.

  • Early Retirement Reduction Amount

    Your benefits are reduced by one-twelfth of one percent for each month your Early Retirement Date is before age 65. The following table illustrates the Early Retirement reduction factors for full years corresponding to the first day of the month following your birthday:

    Age at Retirement Percentage Reduction Percentage of Normal Retirement Benefit Payable*
    Age 64 1% 99%
    Age 63 2% 98%
    Age 62 3% 97%
    Age 61 4% 96%
    Age 60 5% 95%
    Age 59 6% 94%
    Age 58 7% 93%
    Age 57 8% 92%
    Age 56 9% 91%
    Age 55 10% 90%

    * Percentage based on whole years under age 65, not including a prorated reduction for partials years at 1/12 of 1% for each month under age 65.

    Example:

    Thomas takes an Early Retirement at age 59. At retirement, his Pension Credits total 29 and the Benefit Rate in effect is $95. Starting with the benefit he would receive at Normal Retirement Age 65, his monthly payments will be reduced to account for the fact he is retiring 6 years and 0 months before age 65.

    As shown in the Early Retirement Reduction table, Thomas will receive 94% of his Normal Retirement Benefit.

    Step 1: Determine the monthly Normal Retirement Benefit:*

    $95.00 x 29 Pension Credits = $2,755.00

    Step 2: Determine the Early Retirement Reduction:

    The reduction factor from the Early Retirement Reduction table is 94%

    Step 3: Calculate the Early Retirement Benefit:

    94% x $2,755.00 = $2,589.70

    * Assumes a Single Life Annuity only payment method with no benefits continuing to a Beneficiary.

Disability Pension

If you become disabled, you may be entitled to a Disability Pension if you become permanently and totally disabled at any age before attainment of age 65.

  • Eligibility
    Beginning January 1, 1972, in order to qualify for a Disability Pension, you must meet all of the requirements below:
    • You are deemed to be totally and permanently disabled prior to age 65 and have been awarded from the Social Security Administration, a disability pension;
    • You have accumulated at least 10 Vesting Credits, at least one of which must be a Future Pension Credit;
    • You have earned at least one-half (½) Vesting Credit (such credit to be due to work in Covered Employment) in the three years prior to your disability;
    • You are no longer collecting Workers’ Compensation benefits; and
    • Your disability is not directly or indirectly a result of:
      • Military service for any country;
      • Engagement in a felonious or criminal act;
      • Illegal use of narcotics; or
      • An intentionally self-inflicted injury.
  • Proof of Disability
    In order to qualify for a Disability Pension, the Social Security Administration must determine that you are entitled to a Social Security Disability Benefit in connection with your Old Age and Survivor’s Insurance Coverage.
  • Continued Nature of Disability / Return to Work
    If you are receiving a Disability Pension and you recover and are able to return to work, you will no longer be eligible to receive a Disability Pension.
    The Board of Trustees has the right to request you to submit proof of the continued nature of your disability and submit to an examination and re-examination periodically by a physician or physicians selected by the Trustees. If you refuse a physician examination requested by the Board of Trustees or fail to submit the required Social Security information, your Disability Pension will be suspended.
  • Payment of Disability Payments

    Payment of a Disability Pension will commence on the later of the date when Social Security benefits commence, or the month following the date the Disability Pension application is filed.

    If you submit your pension application after the Social Security Disability beginning date, you will be entitled to retroactive benefits back to the Social Security beginning date, but not to exceed three months of payments.

    Effective with applications filed on and after March 31, 2004, your Disability Pension shall be equal to the Normal Retirement Pension calculated as of your date of disablement with a 1% reduction for each year (1/12 of 1% for each month) the disability pension commences prior to age 65. Unless you recover from your disability and/or return to work in Covered Employment, you will continue to collect your Disability Pension benefit for your lifetime. At the time you apply for your Disability Pension benefit, you will elect a Form of Payment as described in Section 7 of this booklet.

    For applications filed prior to March 31, 2004, your Disability Pension shall be equal to your Normal Retirement Pension calculated as of your date of disablement with no reduction. Unless you recover from your disability and/or return to work in Covered Employment, you will continue to collect your Disability Pension Benefit until you reach Normal Retirement Age. Once you reach Normal Retirement Age, your Disability Pension will end. At that time, you may apply for a Normal Retirement Pension.

    If your Disability Pension terminates because you have recovered sufficiently to return to gainful employment, when you again retire, you will be entitled to another type of pension from the Fund.

    Example:

    Daniel at age 59, becomes totally and permanently disabled. He starts collecting Social Security Disability benefits and takes an early retirement at age 59. At retirement, his Pension Credits total 29 and the Benefit Rate in effect is $95. Starting from the benefit he would receive at Normal Retirement Age 65, his monthly payments will be reduced to account for the fact that he is retiring 6 years and 0 months before age 65.

    As shown in the Early Retirement Reduction table, Daniel will receive 94% of his Normal Retirement Benefit.

    Step 1: Determine the monthly Normal Retirement Benefit:

    $95.00 x 29 Pension Credits = $2,755.00

    Step 2: Determine the Early Retirement Reduction:

    The reduction factor from the Early Retirement Reduction table is 94%

    Step 3: Calculate the Disability Retirement Monthly Benefit:*

    94% x $2,755.00 = $2,589.70

    * Assumes a Single Life Annuity only payment method with no benefits continuing to a Beneficiary.

Deferred Vested Pension

If you stop working in Covered Employment before you reach retirement age and you do not qualify for any other benefits under the Plan i.e., Early Retirement, Disability, or Normal Retirement Pension, you may qualify for a Deferred Vested Pension.

  • Eligibility

    To qualify for a Deferred Vested Pension, you must have attained Vested Status (see Section 3). You can apply for your Deferred Vested Pension at any time after you attain age 55, if you have at least 10 Vesting Credits, otherwise, at age 65.

  • Pension Amount

    The monthly amount of the Deferred Vested Pension is the same as your accrued benefit except:

    • If you leave Covered Employment, the monthly amount of the Deferred Vested Pension will be based on the Benefit Rate, plan provisions and the Normal Retirement Age in effect as of the March 31 of the last Plan Year in which you earned at least 1/4 Pension Credit in Covered Employment; or
    • If you return to Covered Employment and earn additional Pension Credits before receiving any pension benefits under this Plan, your monthly benefit will be the total of:
      • The amount of your accrued benefit based on your first period of Covered Employment (if you return to Covered Employment and earn five or more Pension Credits, you will be entitled to the same increases to your original benefit unit as were approved for retirees), plus
      • The Pension Credit earned after you returned to Covered Employment times the Benefit Unit in effect at the end of the period during which the additional Pension Credits were earned. (You may want to refer to the examples on page 9 as illustrations of this provision).

If you have 10 Vesting Credits, you may elect to receive your Deferred Pension before age 65. The monthly amount will be reduced in accordance with the early retirement reduction in effect when you last earned credit, as follows:

Last Credit Reduction per Month Before Age 65
Before April 1, 1988 1/2%
April 1, 1988 – March 31, 1990 1/4%
After March 31, 1990 1/12%

7. YOUR PENSION PAYMENT OPTIONS

If the value of your pension at termination or retirement is $5,000 or less, your benefit will be paid in one lump sum payment as soon as practicable after applying for your benefit.

If your total pension value as determined by the Plan’s actuary is over $5,000, your benefit will be paid in the form of a monthly annuity. Unless you elect an optional form of payment, your pension will be paid in the normal form of payment based on your marital status when you apply for your benefits.

Normal Forms of Payment

  • 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity or
  • Single Life Annuity

The Plan also offers optional forms for payment. They are:

Optional Forms of Payment

  • Life Annuity Option;
  • Joint and One-Half Survivor Option;
  • Joint and Two-Thirds Survivor Option;
  • Joint and Full Survivor Option;
  • Ten Years Certain and Continuous Option; or
  • Partial Lump Sum Option.

Description of the Normal Forms of Payment

50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), requires that all pension plans provide at least a 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity by which your spouse, after your death, can receive 50% of the monthly benefit received by you prior to your death. The benefit is payable only to your spouse to whom you are lawfully married to at the time of your Benefit Commencement Date.

As a married Participant, when you retire your pension will be automatically paid as a 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Amount unless you notify the Board of Trustees in writing that both you and your spouse have waived such coverage and choose another form of payment.

The availability of these options and the amount to be considered under such options may be affected by a divorce. Please refer to Section 13 of this booklet.

Amount of 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Benefit

If you receive your payment in the form of a 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity, you will receive a reduced benefit for your entire life and upon your death, your spouse will receive 50% of the payment that you were receiving at the time of your death. The amount of the reduction depends on the ages of you and your spouse when payments begin.

Single Life Annuity

If you are single and not lawfully married on your Benefit Commencement Date, your benefits are paid as a Single Life Annuity unless you choose another form of payment. This means benefits are paid for your life only, with no death benefit to a beneficiary upon your death.

Amount of Single Life Annuity

If you receive your payment in the form of a Single Life Annuity, you will receive an unreduced benefit for your entire life and upon your death, your benefits end.

Optional Forms of Payment

Instead of the normal forms of payment listed above, you may elect one of the following optional forms of payment. If you are married, you must have the consent of your spouse, both to the form of payment you select, and also to the naming of another beneficiary. If you elect an optional form of payment, your monthly benefit will be further reduced to take into account special death benefit features of the option you selected. These are determined on an actuarial basis.

Joint and Survivor Options

The Plan offers three optional forms of payment that provide a reduced benefit for your lifetime and continue payments based on the percentage of continuation elected to your spouse or other beneficiary after your death. If your spouse or beneficiary die before you, your monthly pension will increase to the amount that would have been payable as if you had elected a Single Life Annuity. The change would go into effect on the month following receipt by the Fund Office of notification of the death of your spouse or beneficiary. However, once you receive pension benefits under a Joint and Survivor option, the amount of your benefit cannot be increased if you and your spouse should become divorced. The three joint and survivor options are:

  • Joint and One-Half Survivor Option;
  • Joint and Two-Thirds Survivor Option; or
  • Joint and Full Survivor Option.

Amount of Joint and Survivor Option

The amount of reduction in your benefit depends on the difference in age between you and your spouse (or beneficiary), and the percentage of your reduced monthly pension you elect for your joint annuitant's protection.

Example:

If you retire at age 65 and are eligible for a Normal Retirement Benefit of $1,275 per month, and your spouse or beneficiary also age 65, you could choose from one of the following:

If You Elect You Will Receive For Life Then Your Spouse will Receive for Life
Joint and One-Half Option $1,125.00 $562.50
Joint and Two-Thirds Option $1,083.00 $722.00
Joint and Full Option $1,007.00 $1,007.00

The Plan does provide, however, that in those cases where a spouse is not selected as Beneficiary, the person designated cannot be of such a young age that the monthly retirement benefit paid to you would be decreased by more than 50%. For example, if a participant were age 65 and wished to designate a grandchild age 15, the reduction factor could be so great that the participant's benefit would be reduced by more than 50%, and thus that election would not be permitted. Additionally, there are certain IRS restrictions and limitations on the age of a non-spouse beneficiary under certain forms of benefit. If you are impacted by this, the Fund Office will let you know.

If your spouse (or beneficiary) dies or you are divorced before your pension begins, the 50% Qualified Joint and Survivor Annuity or the Joint and Survivor Option are not applicable, although in the event of a divorce the court may decree that your spouse has some rights to your pension at a later time. If you return to work and your payments are suspended until you again retire, the option you had selected will remain in effect during the period of suspension.

Ten Years Certain and Continuous Option

You may also choose the "Ten Year Certain and Continuous" Option under which a reduced benefit would be payable to you during your lifetime. In the event that you should die within the first ten years after your retirement, monthly benefits will automatically continue to your Beneficiary until a total of 120 payments have been made to you and your Beneficiary.

Amount of Benefit Under a Ten Years Certain and Continuous Option

It does not matter how old your Beneficiary is, your benefit is reduced based on your age at the time you elect to receive your benefit.

Example:

If you are 65 and elect a Ten-Year Certain and Continuous option and your monthly pension before reduction for this option is $1,600, your monthly benefit would be $1,443.20. (90.2% of $1,600). If you should die prior to collecting 120 payments, your Beneficiary would continue to collect $1,443.20 until a total of 120 payments have been made.

Partial Lump Sum Option

If you have earned at least ten (10) Vesting Credits and at least one-half Pension Credit during the last three Plan Years prior to your retirement, you may be eligible for a one-time partial lump sum payment in addition to a reduced monthly pension benefit. You may elect a $20,000 lump sum payment or a $10,000 lump sum payment as long as the reduction to your monthly pension benefit does not exceed 10%.

If you are married, your spouse must consent in writing to the Partial Lump Sum Option.

8. DEATH BENEFITS FOR ACTIVE EMPLOYEES

Death Benefits before Retirement

If you become vested in your benefit but die before the date your pension becomes effective, a pre-retirement death benefit may be available to your spouse, or if you are not married, to your children or your named beneficiary.

Widow’s Benefit

The Widow’s Benefit provides monthly benefits to your surviving spouse throughout her lifetime. The benefit amount and payment method depends on your age, years of accumulated Pension or Vesting Credits, and your employment status at the time of your death as described in the following chart below:

Eligibility Requirements at Death Benefit Payable to your Surviving Spouse
If you are a vested employee whose benefit payments have not commenced The amount of payment shall be equal to one-half of your accrued benefit as of your date of death and payable on the first day of the month following the later of the date you would have attained age 55 or your date of death.
If you are a vested employee who has earned at least one-half of a Vesting Credit in the three years preceding your death or you are receiving a Disability Pension that commenced before April 1, 2004 and have not elected a form of benefit The amount of payment shall be equal to the greater of the benefit listed above or equal to your Early Retirement or Normal Retirement Benefit reduced for the Joint and Full Survivor Option and payable on the first day of the month following the later of the date you would have attained age 55 or your date of death.
If you are a vested employee who has earned at least one-half of a Vesting Credit in the three years preceding your death or you are receiving a Disability Pension that commenced before April 1, 2004 and have not elected a form of benefit and you earned 30 or more years of Vesting Credit or earned sufficient Vesting Credits such that your age plus Vesting Credits total at least 75 The amount of payment shall be equal to your Early Retirement or Normal Retirement Benefit reduced for the Joint and Full Survivor Option and payable immediately unless your spouse wishes to defer commencement. If the benefit is deferred, the amount of reduction applied to the Early Retirement Benefit shall be based on the reduction that would have applied if you lived until the time of the later Benefit Commencement Date.

Example:

Suppose Jim dies when he is 40 years old and was married to Sue. He terminated from Covered Employment on March 1, 2000. On his termination date, Jim accumulated 20 Vesting and Pension Credits. His spouse Sue, who is also 40, would be entitled to a benefit payable at some later time. The amount of the pension payable at what would have been his 55th birthday is not reduced for Early Retirement or the Joint and Survivor Form of Payment and would be calculated as follows:

$84.00 x 20 Pension Credits = $1,680.00

$1,680.00 x 50% = $840.00

The first payment in the amount of $840.00 is to be made on the first day of the month following what would have been Jim’s 55th birthday.

Example:

Suppose Steve dies when he is 40 years old and was married to Darlene. He was actively working in Covered Employment and accumulated 25 Vesting and Pension Credits at the time of his death. His spouse Darlene is also 40, would be entitled to a benefit payable at some later time. The amount of the pension payable at what would have been Steve’s 55th birthday would be calculated as follows:

Step 1: Determine the monthly Normal Retirement Benefit:

$95.00 x 25 Pension Credits = $2,375.00

Step 2: Determine the Early Retirement Reduction:

The reduction factor from the Early Retirement Reduction table is 90%

Step 3: Calculate the Early Retirement Monthly Benefit:*

90% x $2,375.00 = $2,137.50

Step 4: Reduce the benefit for the Joint and Survivor Option:

.8554 x $2,137.50 = $1,828.42

* Assumes a Single Life Annuity only payment method with no benefits continuing to a Beneficiary.

The first payment in the amount of $1,828.42 is to be made on the first day of the month following what would have been Steve’s 55th birthday. If Steve’s age plus Vesting Credits at the time of your death totaled 75, his spouse Darlene’s benefit could commence in the month following Steve’s death. In this example, Steve’s age plus Vesting Credits is equal to 65, so payments would begin in the month following what would have been Steve’s 55th birthday.

Children’s Benefit

If at the time of your death you are an active vested Employee and you meet all of the requirements for a Surviving Spouse Benefit except that you are not then married, but you do have children who have not attained age 18, a payment equal to 50% of the lump sum value of your accrued monthly benefit will be paid to your estate.

Example:

Daniel who is a widower with children ages 5 and 2 accrues a monthly benefit of $710.00 and dies at age 50. A lump sum payment equal to 50% of the lump sum value of Daniel’s accrued benefit determined on Daniel’s date of death will be payable to his estate.

Beneficiary’s Benefit

If you die prior to eligibility for the Widow’s or Children's Benefit, your Beneficiary may be eligible for a Death Benefit if you were credited with at least one-half of a Vesting Credit during the three Plan Years immediately preceding the year of your death, and you had earned at least three Future Pension Credits. The benefit will be a single payment equal to $250.00 times your total Pension Credits earned through your date of death. There is a maximum of $10,000 under this benefit.

Example:

Robert who is not married and does not have any children dies at age 35. At the time of his death, he was actively working and accumulated 4 Pension and Vesting Credits at the time of his death. Robert’s beneficiary, his sister Ann, is entitled to a lump sum payment in the amount of $1,000. (4 x $250.00)

9. RETURNING TO WORK AFTER RETIREMENT

Suspension of Benefits

You should always consult the Fund Office if you plan on returning to work after you have retired because returning to work may affect your pension benefits. Suspension of Benefits is a very complex situation and this booklet merely gives you a summary of the Suspension Provisions and how they affect your right to continue to receive monthly retirement benefits.

Disqualifying Employment

In order to be considered retired and eligible to receive monthly pension benefits, you must completely withdraw from any employment considered “Disqualifying Employment” Disqualifying Employment means returning to work in the geographic area covered by the Plan at the trade covered by this Plan. This means work for any contractor as an employee or as a self-employed person in any phase of the plasterers', cement masons', or the asphalt layers' trade in the geographic area covered by the Plan. This applies to non-Union as well as to Union work.

If you are receiving a Total and Permanent Disability Pension, any work other than for rehabilitation purposes is Disqualifying Employment.

Waiver of Suspension

The Trustees may, from time to time, adopt by motion objective standards under which benefits will not be suspended for engaging in specified types or categories of work at the trade covered by this Plan, for the period specified in the motion granting this exemption.

Suspension of Benefits Before Age 65

If you retire before age 65 and then begin to work in Disqualifying Employment while you are receiving pension benefits, you must notify the Board of Trustees in writing prior to your return to work. Your pension benefits will be temporarily suspended each month in which you work and will then resume six (6) months after you stop working in Disqualifying Employment. This additional six (6) month suspension will not apply if you return to work for a Contributing Employer and you have complied with the notice requirement.

If you are past Normal Retirement Age, your pension benefits will not be suspended for the additional suspension periods described above, but will be suspended for any month you work 40 or more hours.

Suspension of Benefits after Age 65

If you are age 65 or older and then return to work in Disqualifying Employment, your pension benefits will be temporarily suspended each month in which you work or are paid for forty (40) hours or more. Your pension benefits will resume the following month after you have notified the Board of Trustees that you are no longer working in Disqualifying Employment.

You must notify the Fund Office in writing prior to re-employment that may be disqualifying under the provisions of the Plan without regard to the number of hours worked. If it is determined that you returned to work in Disqualifying Employment and failed to give timely notice to the Fund Office, the Board of Trustees shall presume that you worked for at least forty (40) hours in each month during such employment and shall suspend your benefit.

Example:

You take early retirement on July 1, 2005 at age 61 with a monthly pension benefit of $1,800. At age 63 after having received 24 monthly payments, you return to Union work as a plasterer, cement mason or asphalt layer within the geographic area covered by the Plan. You report to the Trustees and you continue to work for a period of seven additional months. What happens to your pension benefit? Your $1,800 monthly pension will not be paid for the seven months in which you work. Once you stop work and notify the Trustees, your payments will resume.

If your benefits are suspended, when you cease prohibited work, the same amount of monthly benefit payment will resume plus an amount based on any additional service in Covered Employment and the Benefit Unit in effect at the time of your second retirement. The option under which you had received benefits prior to the suspension will remain in effect during the suspension. (That is, benefits will be paid in the same form and for the same guaranteed period as your original pension benefits). If your original Benefit Commencement Date was at or after your Normal Retirement Date, the additional benefit shall be paid in the same form as the initial benefit amount.

If you are considering a return to employment, you should write the Board of Trustees, give the particulars of the job involved, and ask the Trustees for approval. Do not depend on any verbal opinion by any individual Trustee or any other person, whatever his occupation. The Board will give you a detailed reply. The Board must act in a uniform, non-discriminatory manner and in accordance with Section 203(a)(3)(B) of ERISA and the regulations that apply, which can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations starting at 29 CFR Sec. 2530.203-3. If the decision you receive is unfavorable, you have the right to appeal the decision in the same fashion as described in Section 11.

10. APPLYING FOR BENEFITS

You must file a written application with the Board of Trustees on a form that will be provided upon request by the Fund Office. Application for retirement must be filed at least one month in advance of the month in which payments begin.

While the rules require pension applications to be filed at least one month in advance, you are urged to file as soon as you decide on your intended retirement date. Early filing will avoid subsequent delay in the processing of your application and payment of benefits.

If you have met all the requirements of the Pension Plan, including the one-month advance filing, your pension will begin on the first day of the month following entitlement to benefits.

Benefits provided by the Plan are not affected by your Social Security payments. You are entitled to Social Security payments independently.

11. APPEAL PROCESS

The Fund Office will notify you of the action taken regarding your application within 90 days of the date that you filed your application unless there are special circumstances that require more time for processing your application. You will be notified within that original 90-day period if more time (an extension of up to 90 days) is needed. If your application for a pension benefit or the application of your Beneficiary for a death benefit is denied by the Board of Trustees, you will be informed in writing within 90 days after receipt of the application or claim and the reasons why you are not eligible and what if anything, you can do to become eligible.

If your application is partially or completely denied, the notice you will receive will explain specifically why your claim was denied. In addition, the Fund Office will provide references to specific Plan provisions, rules and regulations that the denial was based on, along with a description of any additional materials that you could submit to support your claim and an explanation of why it is necessary. The Fund Office will also provide you with an explanation of the steps that you must take in order to have your denial reviewed.

The initial decision shall be final and binding on all parties unless it is appealed, according to the process described below.

How to Appeal a Decision

If you believe you have met the Plan’s eligibility requirements for a pension or if you question the determination of the amount of the benefit awarded, you may petition the Board of Trustees for a review of your claim. Similarly, if you believe a determination that employment is disqualifying is in error, you may ask for a review of that determination.

Your request for review must be in writing and must be received by the Fund Office within 90 days of the date that you receive the notice of the adverse decision. You should mail your request to:

Board of Trustees
Boston Plasterers’, Cement Masons’ and Asphalt Layers Local No. 534 Pension Plan
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124

If your written request for a review of an adverse decision is not filed within the 90-day time frame, you will lose your right to appeal and have your claim reviewed by the Trustees. In exceptional circumstances and for good cause shown in writing, the Board of Trustees may grant an extension of time for the applicant to obtain additional information necessary to complete the appeal.

In your written request for a review, you must explain clearly why the benefit should not be denied or the amount should be adjusted or a determination that employment is disqualifying should be reconsidered. You may submit additional materials for consideration or review by the Trustees, including a written explanation of the issues and comments on the issues.

You may also include (in writing) a request to review all materials and Plan documents that relate to your claim. The Fund Office will charge a reasonable fee to cover the photocopying costs for these documents.

The Board of Trustees will make a decision on your appeal at its first meeting following receipt of the request for review (which is at least 30 days’ after receipt of the request). If special circumstances require more time, a decision will be made at the second meeting, but no later than the third quarterly meeting, and you will be notified of the reasons for the delay and the date you can expect a decision before such an extension of time begins.

The Trustees will provide you with written notification of their decision as soon as is practicable. The notification will refer you to the specific provisions of the Plan on which the Trustees’ decision is based.

If, for any reason you do not receive a written decision within the time frames explained above, you can assume that your request for a review has been denied.

The decision of the Trustees with respect to a request for a review is final and binding on all parties unless it is contrary to applicable law.

12. FUTURE OF THE PLAN

The Board of Trustees believes that contributions will be sufficient under normal circumstances to provide the benefits described in this booklet. However, the future of the Plan will be determined by the terms of the collective bargaining agreements and by conditions relating to the income and liabilities of the Plan. Since it is not possible to predict future conditions, the Board of Trustees reserves the right to amend or terminate the Plan at any time at the Trustees’ discretion.

Although the Trustees may amend the Plan retroactively, except as otherwise provided by law, no amendment may take away a participant’s accrued benefits.

If the Plan were to terminate or if there were a complete discontinuance of contributions, you would have a non-forfeitable right to your accrued pension benefits, to the extent that there were sufficient assets in the Fund after providing for all of the expenses of the Plan, including termination expenses. Article 14 of the Plan provides the rules as prescribed by law for the allocation of assets on termination including those cases where the assets of the Fund are insufficient to pay all of the benefits.

Benefits under the Plan are insured by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC). This insurance provides benefits protection when a plan terminates and its assets will not cover all benefits payable. However, it does not cover all benefits and the amount of benefits protection is subject to certain limitations. For more information, see “Federal Insurance” on page 27.

Limitation on Authority

No individual Trustee, Fund Office employee, Contributing Employer or Union or any representative of any Contributing Employer, the Fund Office or Union is authorized to interpret this Plan, nor can such person act as an agent of the Board of Trustees.

13. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Assignment of Benefits

At no time, either before or after you begin receiving pension payments, can you assign, transfer or sell your pension or any rights you may have under the Plan. In addition, your pension and interest in the Plan is protected against claims of creditors, orders, decrees, garnishments, executions or other legal process or proceedings to the full extent permitted by law (except Qualified Domestic Relations Orders as discussed below and IRS levies).

Qualified Domestic Relations Orders

Your benefits may be ordered by a court to be paid to an Alternate Payee. An Alternate Payee is usually a former spouse or dependent child. If the Plan receives a Domestic Relations Order against your pension, it will review the qualification status of the Order and administer benefits accordingly. A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is binding on all parties and must be fully recognized and executed by the Plan. If you have any questions regarding your rights under a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, or would like a copy of the Plan’s QDRO procedures free of charge, contact the Fund Office.

Maximum Benefit Limitations

The Internal Revenue Code under Section 415, provides that your yearly benefit from the Plan cannot exceed specific maximums. These maximum benefit limitation rules are complex and are not discussed in detail here. It is very unlikely that your pension benefit will be impacted. If the Fund Office records indicate that you may be affected by these rules, you will be notified.

Employers’ Rights

Your employer’s right to discipline or discharge you or exercise their rights as to tenure of employment shall not be affected for any reason by the existence of this Plan or any action or provision under it.

Taxation of Benefits

Monthly pension payments are taxable as ordinary income. If you receive a payment not in the form of ordinary income e.g., a lump sum payment, you may be subject to mandatory income tax withholding. If so, the Federal government currently requires that mandatory Federal income tax of 20% be withheld from the lump sum payment, unless you have your distribution transferred (rolled over) directly to an IRA or another qualified plan. A distribution that is eligible for this type of transfer is called an eligible rollover distribution. If you receive a distribution from the Plan that qualifies for special tax treatment, you will receive a “Special Tax Notice Regarding Plan Payments” that will provide you with more detailed information on the tax withholding rules applicable to eligible rollover distributions. You may also request a copy of this from the Fund Office.

You may elect to have both federal and state income tax withheld.

If you receive benefits from the Pension Fund during a calendar year, you will receive a Form 1099-R or any other reporting required by the IRS after the end of that year.

14. PLAN INFORMATION

Type of Administration of the Plan

The Plan is administered and maintained by the Board of Trustees. The Trustees are governed by the Trust Agreement and Plan documents established and maintained in accordance with Collective Bargaining Agreements.

Pension Fund Identification Number

The Employer Identification Number (EIN) issued to the Pension Fund is: 04-6127786.

Plan Number: 001

Name and Address of the Plan Administrator

Board of Trustees
Boston Plasterers’, Cement Masons’ and Asphalt Layers Local No. 534 Pension Plan
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124

Contributing Employers

You may make a written request to the Fund Office for information as to whether a particular employer or employer organization is a Contributing Employer with respect to this Plan and if so, you may request the address of that Contributing Employer.

Reference to Collective Bargaining Agreements

The Pension Fund and the Pension Plan are maintained pursuant to various collective bargaining agreements which provide for the rate of employer contributions to the Pension Fund, the type of work and areas of work for which contributions are payable and certain other terms governing contributions. A copy of the applicable collective bargaining agreement is available for examination at the Fund Office.

Type of Plan

This Plan is a Defined Benefit Pension Plan.

Federal Insurance

Your pension benefits under this multiemployer Plan are insured by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), a Federal insurance agency. A multiemployer plan is a collectively bargained pension arrangement involving two or more unrelated employers, usually in a common industry.

Under the multiemployer plan program, the PBGC provides financial assistance through loans to plans that are insolvent. A multiemployer plan is considered insolvent if the plan is unable to pay benefits (at least equal to the PBGC’s guaranteed benefit limit) when due.

The maximum benefit that the PBGC guarantees is set by law. Under the multiemployer program, the PBGC guarantee equals a Participant’s years of service multiplied by (1) 100% of the first $11 of the monthly benefit accrual rate and (2) 75% of the next $33. The PBGC’s maximum guarantee limit is $35.75 per month, multiplied by a Participant’s years of service. For example, the maximum annual guarantee for a retiree with 30 years of service would be $12,870.

The PBGC guarantee generally covers:

  • Normal and early retirement benefits;
  • Disability benefits if you become disabled before the Plan becomes insolvent; and
  • Certain benefits for your survivors.

The PBGC guarantee generally does not cover:

  • Benefits greater than the maximum guaranteed amount set by law;
  • Benefit increases and new benefits based on Plan provisions that have been in place for fewer than 5 years at the earlier of:
    • The date the Plan terminates or
    • The time the Plan becomes insolvent.
  • Benefits that are not Vested because you have not worked long enough;
  • Benefits for which you have not met all of the requirements at the time the Plan becomes insolvent; and
  • Non-pension benefits such as health insurance, life insurance, certain death benefits, vacation pay, and severance pay.

For more information about the PBGC and the benefits it guarantees, ask your Fund Administrator or contact:

PBGC’s Technical Assistance Division
1200 K Street, N.W.
Suite 930
Washington, D.C. 20005-4026
Phone (202) 326-4000 (not a toll-free number)

TTY/TDD users may call the federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to (202) 326-4000. Additional information about the PBGC’s pension insurance program is available through the PBGC’s website on the Internet at http://www.pbgc.gov.

Source of Contributions to the Pension Fund and Identifying the Organization through Which Benefits are Provided

Contributions to the Pension Fund are made by individual Contributing Employers at the rates established by Collective Bargaining Agreements. Benefits are provided from the Pension Fund’s assets in accordance with the Trust Agreement and the assets are invested by independent professional asset management companies and held in a separate custodial account at Amalgamated Bank.

Names and Addresses of the Members of the Board of Trustees

Union Representatives Employer Representatives
Mr. Harry Brousaides
Secretary/Treasurer
Boston Plasterers & Cement Masons, Local No. 534
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124
Mr. Thomas S. Gunning
Chairman
Building Trades Employers Association
of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts
150 Grossman Drive
Braintree, MA 02184
Mr. Vincent DiSalvo
34A Morton Avenue
Medford, MA 02155
Mr. David Smith
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124
  Mr. Stephen P. Affanto Building Trades Employers Association of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts 150 Grossman Drive Braintree, MA 02184

Name and Address of the Person Designated as Agent for Service or Legal Process

Ms. Mary Keohan, Administrator
Boston Plasterers & Cement Masons, Local No. 534
7 Frederika Street
Boston, MA 02124

In addition, legal process may be served upon any Plan Trustee at the address listed above.

Plan Year

All financial records of the Plan are kept on a fiscal year of April 1 to March 31.

Appeals Procedure

If a Participant is denied, in whole or in part, any benefits under this Plan, remedies are available and are set forth earlier in this Summary Plan Description.

15. YOUR RIGHTS UNDER ERISA

As a Participant in the Boston Plasterers’ Cement Masons’ and Asphalt Layers’ Union Local No. 534 Pension Plan, you are entitled to certain rights and protections under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). ERISA provides that all Plan Participants are entitled to:

  1. Receive Information About Your Plan and Benefits
    • Examine without charge, all Plan documents at the Plan Administrator's office and at other specified locations, such as worksites and union halls, all documents governing the Plan, including insurance contracts and collective bargaining agreements, and a copy of the latest annual report (Form 5500 series) filed by the Plan with the U.S. Department of Labor and available at the Public Disclosure Room of the Employee Benefit Security Administration.
    • Obtain upon written request to the Plan Administrator, copies of documents governing the operation of the Plan including insurance contracts and collective bargaining agreements, and a copy of the latest annual report (Form 5500 series) and updated Summary Plan Description. The Plan Administrator may charge a reasonable amount for the copies.
    • Receive a summary of the Plan's annual financial report. The Plan Administrator is required by law to furnish each Participant with a copy of this Summary Annual Report.
    • Obtain a statement telling you whether you have a right to receive a pension at normal retirement age (age 65) and if so, what your benefits would be at normal retirement age if you stop working under the Plan now. If you do not have a right to a pension, the statement will tell you how many more years you have to work to get a right to a pension. This statement must be requested in writing and is not required to be given more than once every twelve (12) months. The Plan must provide the statement free of charge.
  2. Prudent Actions by Plan Fiduciaries

    In addition to creating rights for Plan Participants, ERISA imposes duties upon the people who are responsible for the operation of the employee benefit plan. The people who operate your Plan, called “Fiduciaries” of the Plan, have a duty to do so prudently and in the interest of you and other Plan Participants and beneficiaries. No one, including your Employer, your union, or any other person, may fire you or otherwise discriminate against you in any way to prevent you from obtaining a pension benefit or exercising your rights under ERISA.

  3. Enforce Your Rights

    If your claim for a pension benefit is denied or ignored in whole or in part, you have a right to know why this was done, to obtain copies of documents relating to the decision without charge, and to appeal any denial, all within certain time schedules.

    Under ERISA, there are steps you can take to enforce the above rights. For instance, if you request a copy of Plan documents or the latest annual report from the Plan and do not receive them within 30 days, you may file suit in a Federal court. In such a case, the court may require the plan administrator to provide the materials and pay you up to $110 a day until you receive the materials, unless the materials were not sent because of reasons beyond the control of the administrator. If you have a claim for benefits that is denied or ignored, in whole or in part, you may file suit in a state or Federal court. In addition, if you disagree with the Plan’s decision or lack thereof concerning the qualified status of a domestic relations order, you may file suit in Federal court. If it should happen that Plan Fiduciaries misuse the Plan’s money, or if you are discriminated against for asserting your rights, you may seek assistance from the U.S. Department of Labor, or you may file suit in a Federal court. The court will decide who should pay court costs and legal fees. If you are successful, the court may order the person you have sued to pay these costs and fees. If you lose, the court may order you to pay these costs and fees, for example, if it finds your claim is frivolous.

  4. Assistance With Your Questions

    If you have any questions about your Plan, you should contact the Plan Administrator. If you have any questions about this statement or about your rights under ERISA, or if you need assistance in obtaining documents from the Plan Administrator, you should contact the nearest office of the Employee Benefits Security Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, listed in your telephone directory or the Division of Technical Assistance and Inquiries, the Employee Benefits Security Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20210. You may also obtain certain publications about your rights and responsibilities under ERISA by calling the publications hotline of the Employee Benefits Security Administration.

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