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pensionsinfo@nspension.ca

 

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My Retirement Plan offers active plan members secure access to their personalized pension information online. Members can:

  • View their Annual Member Statement;
  • Use the Pension Projection Tool; and
  • View helpful retirement and financial planning resources.

 

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Click here to download Deputy Minister's Pension Coverage Brochure.

Retirement Eligibility  |  Canada Pension Plan Benefits  |  Survivor Benefits  |  Contributions  |  Cost of Living Adjustment (Indexing)  |  Disability Benefits


Retirement Eligibility

PUBLIC SERVICE SUPERANNUATION ACT

Members of the Public Service Superannuation Plan, including Deputy Ministers, may qualify for pension benefits under the Public Service Superannuation Act.

 
Eligibility
 
Amendments to the Public Service Superannuation Act have changed retirement eligibility rules for employees who start working for the Province of Nova Scotia or a participating employer on or after April 6, 2010.
 
If you started work prior to April 6, 2010 you may be eligible to retire and receive a pension when you satisfy one of these rules:
 
  • Rule of 80 - You must be at least 50 years of age, and your age plus years of service must equal at least 80;

  • Age 60 Rule - You must be at least 60 years of age and have at least 2 years of service;

  • Age 55 Rule - You must be at least 55 years of age and have at least 2 years of service (this is a reduced pension).


If you started work on or after April 6, 2010 a Rule of 85 applies to you.  You may be eligible to retire and receive a pension when you satisfy one of these rules:

  • Rule of 85 (NEW) - You must be at least 55 years of age, and your age plus years of service must equal at least 85;

  • Age 60 Rule - You must be at least 60 years of age and have at least 2 years of service;

  • Age 55 Rule - You must be at least 55 years of age and have at least 2 years of service (this is a reduced pension).


Calculation of Benefit1

2% X (Highest 5 Years Average Salary) X (Years of Pensionable Service)

Note: at age 65 the pension benefit is recalculated as a result of integration with the Canada Pension Plan (CPP).
1Lump sum payments such as bonuses, performance payments or retroactive compensation can artificially inflate pension estimates if they have not been correctly reported to us. It is possible that your actual pension benefit may be lower and you should take this into consideration.


DEPUTY MINISTER SUPPLEMENTARY PENSION RULES

A Deputy Minister qualifies for a Deputy Minister’s pension when all of the following criteria are met. If the criteria are not met, the pension benefit and eligibility would be determined under the normal provisions of the Public Service Superannuation Act (above).


Eligibility

  • at least 50 years of age;

  • at least 20 years of service as a member of the Public Service Superannuation Plan (not including outside service transferred in, unless it was with the Federal Government); and at least 5 of these years must be as a Deputy Minister.


Calculation of Benefit1

2% X (Highest 3 years Average Salary) X (Years of Pensionable Service)

Note: at age 65 the pension benefit is recalculated as a result of integration with the Canada Pension Plan (CPP).
1Lump sum payments such as bonuses, performance payments or retroactive compensation can artificially inflate pension estimates if they have not been correctly reported to us. It is possible that your actual pension benefit may be lower and you should take this into consideration.

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Canada Pension Plan Benefits

Canada Pension Plan (CPP) benefits may be drawn at age 65 or taken as early as age 60. If you decide to draw CPP benefits early you would receive a reduced amount calculated by the Canada Pension Plan. For information on CPP benefits please contact the Canada Pension Plan at 1-800-277-9914.

The pension payable under the Public Service Superannuation Act is not affected by the date the Deputy Minister elects to start drawing CPP benefits.

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Survivor Benefits

Provisions for survivor benefits apply to members of the Public Service Superannuation Plan and those who qualify under the Deputy Minister Supplementary Pension Rules.  Amendments to the Public Service Superannuation Act effective April 6, 2010 have resulted in changes to survivor benefit rules.  If you were an employee with the Province of Nova Scotia or a participating employer prior to April 6, 2010, your survivor benefits remain the same.  If you became an employee on or after April 6, 2010 there are new survivor benefit rules for you.  These changes are noted below.


Surviving Spouse:

  • If You Die in Service
    If you started work prior to April 6, 2010 and you die in service, your surviving spouse would be entitled to receive 100% of the pension benefit for a period of five years that you would have been entitled to receive if you were eligible for retirement. After the end of the five-year guarantee period, your spouse would receive 66 2/3% of your pension benefit, payable for life.
    Note:  If you first started work on or after April 6, 2010, the survivor entitlement is the same except at the end of the five-year guarantee period, your spouse would receive approximately 60% of your pension for life.
  • If You Die During the 5-Year Guarantee Period
    If you die within five years after retiring, your surviving spouse would receive 100% of your pension benefit for the rest of the five-year guarantee period.
  • If You Die After the End of the Five Year Guarantee Period
    If you started work prior to April 6, 2010 and you die after the 5-year guarantee period, your surviving spouse would be entitled to receive 66 2/3% of the pension benefit that you were receiving, payable for life.

Note:  If you started work on or after April 6, 2010 and die after the end of the five-year guarantee period, your spouse will receive approximately 60% of your pension, payable for life.


Surviving Children:

If you started work prior to April 6, 2010, surviving children are eligible to receive 10% of the pension benefit up to 18 years of age (or 25, if in continuous full-time attendance at an educational institution). If there are more than 3 eligible children, 33 1/3% of the member’s pension benefit is divided equally among them. Note that during the 5-year guarantee period, children’s benefits are deducted from the 100% benefit paid to a surviving spouse. If there is no surviving spouse, eligible surviving children would be entitled to share the 66 2/3% spouse’s benefit.

Note:  If you started work on or after April 6, 2010, surviving children are eligible to receive 10% of the pension benefit up to 18 years of age (or 25, if in continuous full-time attendance at an educational institution). If there are more than 4 eligible children, 40% of the member’s pension benefit is divided equally among them. Note that during the 5-year guarantee period, children’s benefits are deducted from the 100% benefit paid to a surviving spouse. If there is no surviving spouse, eligible surviving children would be entitled to share the 60% spouse’s benefit.


Surviving Dependant:

Survivor benefits may also be available to a person related to you who was dependent on you by reason of mental or physical infirmity. If you started work prior to April 6, 2010 and have no spouse or children, but have an eligible dependant, the dependant is entitled to receive the 66 2/3% spouse’s benefit.

Note:  If you started work on or after April 6, 2010 the entitlement to an eligible dependant would be 60% of the spouse’s benefit.


No Surviving Spouse, Children or Dependants:

If you die in service and are not survived by a spouse, children, or dependants, a refund of your pension contributions plus interest will be paid to your estate. If you retire and then die before receiving pension payments at least equal to your pension contributions plus interest, a refund of the difference will be paid to your estate.

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Contributions

How much do I contribute to the pension plan?

Please click here to download the contribution formula sheet.

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Cost of Living Adjustment (Indexing)

Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA), commonly known as Indexing, for Deputy Ministers is aligned with COLA paid to retired members of the Public Service Superannuation Plan. 

COLA has been set at 0.85% per year, for the 5-year cycle starting January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2020.


How is COLA determined?

COLA is set by the Public Service Superannuation Plan Trustee Inc. (Trustee). The Trustee is required to conduct a funded-health review of the PSSP every 5 years, in accordance with provisions in the Public Service Superannuation Act (PSSA). The purpose of this review is to determine the PSSP’s capacity to afford annual cost of living adjustments and to review the adequacy of contribution rates. The last funded-health review was completed by the Trustee in 2015.

After the 2015 funded-health review, the Trustee made the following decisions:

  • Approved a COLA set at 0.85 per cent per year (January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2020), and
  • Confirmed no changes to Plan member and employer contribution rates will be made.

The highest priority during the funded-health review was given to the PSSP’s long-term financial health and sustainability.

The guidelines used to determine the granting of any COLA are detailed in the Funding Policy of the PSSA. The Funding Policy states:
“If the funded ratio of the PSSP is between 100 per cent – 110 per cent, the Trustee may provide COLA so long as the PSSP’s funded ratio is not projected to fall below 100 per cent at the end of the 5-year cycle, including the impact of granting COLA throughout the 5-year cycle.”

The 5-year funded-health review was conducted by the Trustee and with the advice of the PSSP’s actuary.


When is the next 5-year funded-health review?

The Trustee’s next review of the PSSP’s funded-health will be in 2020, for the 5-year cycle starting January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2025.

At this time, COLA will be dependent upon the PSSP’s funded ratio as of December 31, 2019. COLA may only be provided if the Plan is fully funded and if determined to be prudent by the Trustee.

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Disability Benefits

For information regarding long term disability benefits please contact:
NS Public Service LTD Plan Trust Fund
Halifax Professional Centre
5991 Spring Garden Road, Suite 901,
Halifax NS B3H 1Y6
Tel: 902-461-0421, Toll free: 1-877-461-0421
Fax: 902-466-3406
Email enquiries: comments@nsps-ltd.com

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