(click topic to expand or collapse area)
Definitions

Annuity

A monthly payment made to you for life when you retire.

Cash Balance Defined Benefit Pension Plan

A retirement plan provided by your employer that is funded monthly based upon a percentage of your annual earnings and grows over the years that you work. Your account is made up of Employer pay credits, Fund match credits and interest credits.

Compensation

Shall include your regular annual salary or wages paid each calendar year, inclusive of overtime pay, bonuses, vacation pay, sick leave pay, severance pay (when paid prior to your date of termination of employment), any other payment for services rendered, and your salary deferrals under Code Sections 125, 132(f)(4), 401(k), 403(b) and/or 457. During a Plan Year, compensation cannot exceed the applicable annual dollar limitation under Code Section 401(a)(17)(A). In 2015, the maximum compensation is $265,000.

Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA)

ERISA began in 1974 to protect the interest of participants and beneficiaries in employee benefit plans. ERISA requires plan sponsors to report and disclose detailed plan information to participants and the Department of Labor.

Highly Compensated Employee

An employee whose earnings meet or exceed limits established annually by the Internal Revenue Service. In general, you will be considered a Highly Compensated Employee for a Plan Year if your compensation for the prior Plan Year met or exceeded the dollar limit specified by the IRS. This amount is indexed annually. For 2015 it is $120,000.

Interest Credits

Interest credits are an amount the Fund credits to your account each month based on a specified rate. Annual interest credits are set annually and are guaranteed at the average 10-year Treasury rate from October of the previous year.

Lump-Sum Distribution

A single payment made to you of either 100% or 50% of your Fund account, following your termination of employment or commencement of retirement.

Normal Retirement Age

is your 65th birthday.

Optional Employee After-Tax Contributions

If you are not a Highly Compensated Employee during any Plan Year you may elect to have a portion of your wages deducted through payroll withholding. The deduction is made on an after-tax basis and cannot be less than 1% or greater than 10% of your compensation.

Participant

A Participant is an employee of a participating Association who has completed two years of service from her date of hire.

Pay Credits

The percentage of pay that is credited to your Fund account each month. Pay credits are the sum of the following:

• Association Contribution

The percentage of pay that your employer contributes to your account.

• Fund Matching Contribution

The percentage of pay that the Fund credits to your account. The Fund matching contribution will be 40% of the contribution level elected by your Association.

Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation (PBGC)

A federal corporation created to insure defined benefit pension plans in the event of their termination. The Plan is a defined benefit plan and is insured by the PBGC.

Plan Year

Means the 12-month period beginning on January 1 and ending on December 31.

Rollover

The plan to plan (another employer’s plan) or plan to trustee (IRA) transfer that you request when receiving a lump-sum distribution from the Plan. When you request a rollover of your lump-sum distribution, you delay having to pay taxes until a future date. The YWCA Retirement Fund does not accept rollovers.

Vesting

Your non-forfeitable right to Plan benefits. You are fully vested as soon as you participate in the Fund.

Year of Service

The completion of 1,000 hours of service within a 12-month period beginning on the first day (anniversary date) you complete one hour of service.

Contributions & Accounts

CONTRIBUTIONS

The Fund is a non-contributory cash balance defined benefit retirement plan. You are not required to make any contributions. Each month you earn pay credits which are a percentage of your compensation.

ACCOUNTS

The Fund establishes and maintains an account for each Participant. Your account consists of Association Contributions that are also known as pay credits, matching Fund Contributions, Optional Employee After-Tax Contributions if you qualify and choose to make them, and interest credits.

Your account balance can never decline. Active Participants that are employed by a participating Association will receive a quarterly statement of account. Terminated Participants who continue to maintain an account with the Fund will receive an annual statement of account.

If you terminate your employment with a participating Association and withdraw the total amount of your account you will no longer receive a statement and your account will be closed.

Association Contributions

Participating Associations have the choice to select one of four contributions levels: 10.0%, 7.5%, 5.0% or 3.0%. This is the percentage of an employee's total monthly compensation, also known as a pay credit that will be contributed to your account.

The contribution rate selected is the same for all Participants within the Association. The rate is selected annually, before the start of the new Plan Year and cannot be changed during that year.

Contributions are made monthly by each participating Association to the Retirement Fund.

Fund Match Contributions

For each month that you receive an Association contribution, the Retirement Fund will credit your account with an additional amount equal to 40% of your Association’s contribution.

Contribution Rates

The pay credits made to your account each month are the total of your Association’s contribution and the Fund’s matching contribution.

PAY CREDITS If your Association Contributes Then the Fund will add a 40% match The total added to your account will be
10% 4% 14%
7.5% 3% 10.5%
5% 2% 7%
3% 1.2% 4.2%

Your Association can tell you which contribution rate it selected for the year. Your quarterly statement of account from the Fund will also indicate the contribution rates that apply to your account.

Employee Contributions

OPTIONAL EMPLOYEE AFTER-TAX CONTRIBUTIONS

In order to increase your future retirement benefit, you may choose to make optional contributions to the Fund. These after-tax contributions are made on a monthly basis through payroll deduction by your Association.

You may make contributions in one of two ways. The first is an amount, expressed as a percentage of your compensation between 1% and 10%, or you may designate a specific dollar amount that is between 1% and 10%.

You can authorize payroll deductions at any time by submitting a completed Authorization for Optional Employee After-Tax Contributions Form to your payroll departments. Forms may be obtained from your Association or the Fund.

As required by law, any participant who is considered a Highly Compensated Employee cannot make additional optional contributions.

CATCH-UP CONTRIBUTIONS

If you do not, or did not, make maximum optional employee after-tax contributions in prior years, you may make “catch-up” contributions directly to the Fund in a single sum. If you are interested, please call the Retirement Fund.

Interest Credits

For each plan year a new interest crediting rate is established.

The rate is guaranteed for each plan year (January through December) and is based on the average rate on 10-Year U.S. Treasury securities for October of the preceding year.

At the end of each month your account is credited with interest, based on the balance in your account at the end of the preceding month.

Your quarterly account statement lists the current interest rate.

Eligibility

ELIGIBLE EMPLOYEES

As an employee of a YWCA which participates in the Retirement Plan, your participation in the Plan is guaranteed upon meeting the eligibility requirements.

The Plan is available to all active full-time and part-time employees (with the exception of the classes of employees mentioned below) whose compensation is reported on a W-2 form. There is no minimum or maximum age.

INELIGIBLE EMPLOYEES

You are not eligible to participate in the Plan if you are a leased employee (as defined by the Internal Revenue Code). Individuals who do not receive payment for services directly from the Association payroll such as an independent contractor or consultant are also excluded from participation. Certain collectively bargained union employees are also ineligible to participate unless the union and the participating Association agree that union employees will participate.

Enrollment

ENROLLMENT OF NEW PARTICIPANTS

You will be enrolled in the Plan as of the first of the month after you complete two years of service counting from your date of hire. The two years of service do not need to be consecutive. Counting begins again for each year using the employee’s anniversary date as the first day for each New Year.

It is important to note that an employee becomes eligible on the first day of the month following the end of the 12-month period during which she completes her second year of service, even if she completes 1,000 hours of employment prior to the end of the 12-month period.

If you do not reach the ERISA defined 1,000 hours of service in any 12-month period, that year is not counted toward eligibility.

Your participating Association is responsible for keeping track of the hours you work each year and reporting to the Retirement Fund when you have satisfied the two years of service requirement.

EXAMPLE 1:

Suppose a full-time employee is hired on March 15, 2014 and works 37.5 hours each week. She will satisfy the two years of service requirement on March 14, 2016, as shown below:

Actual Hours Worked Year of Service
3/15/14 thru 3/14/15 37.5 hours x 52 weeks=1950 Yes
3/15/15 thru 3/14/16 37.5 hours x 52 weeks=1950 Yes

She will begin Fund participation on April 1, 2016

EXAMPLE 2:

Suppose a part-time employee is hired on September 20, 2014 and works 24 hours each week during her first year of employment, 15 hours each week during her second year and 20 hours each week during her third year. She will satisfy the two years of service requirement on September 19, 2017, as shown below:

Actual Hours Worked Year of Service
9/20/14 thru 9/19/15 24 hours x 52 weeks = 1248 Yes
9/20/15 thru 9/19/16 15 hours x 52 weeks = 780   No
9/20/16 thru 9/19/17 20 hours x 52 weeks = 1040 Yes

She will begin Fund participation on October 1, 2017

ENROLLMENT OF PREVIOUS PARTICIPANTS

Eligibility for participation in the Plan is earned only once. If you were a Participant in the Plan, left Association employment, and at a later date were rehired by the same or another participating Association, then you must be re-enrolled immediately. There is no waiting period and you do not re-earn eligibility. You must inform your Association of previous participation in the Retirement Fund.

EQUIVALENCY RULE

The equivalency rule applies in limited situations. When a participating Association cannot provide the Retirement Fund with records that show the actual number of hours worked by an employee, the equivalency rule will apply.

The equivalency rule counts 190 hours toward eligibility each month if the employee works one or more hours in that month.

Military Service

If you are an active Participant and you leave employment with a participating Association to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States, and you have re-employment rights under any applicable federal law, and you return to active employment within the time period specified under the applicable law, then you will be considered to have been on an approved leave of absence and you will accrue eligibility service if you are not already a Participant for that period, including the accrual of Pay Credits, Match Credits and Interest Credits to your account, as if you had been working on a full time basis for a participating Association.

Breaks in Service

If you terminate or leave your Association employment before satisfying the eligibility requirement for participation and are re-employed by the same or any other participating Association within two years, your prior Association service will be counted toward your eligibility. Your anniversary years are counted from your initial employment date.

EXAMPLE:

Suppose a full-time employee is first hired on July 19, 2014 and works through December 3, 2015 and then is rehired on April 2, 2017. She satisfied one year of service before she first terminated, as shown below:

Actual Hours Worked Year of Service
7/19/14 thru 7/18/15 40 hours x 52 weeks = 2080 Yes
7/19/15 thru 12/3/15 20 hours x 20 weeks = 400   No

When she returns to work for the same or another participating Association on April 2, 2017, the day she was initially hired (July 19) is used to track the anniversary years and the hours of service worked, as shown below:

Actual Hours Worked Year of Service
4/2/17 thru 7/18/17 40 hours x 13 weeks = 520   No
7/19/17 thru 7/18/18 40 hours x 52 weeks = 2080 Yes

She will begin Fund participation on August 1, 2018

Waivers of Participation

Federal legislation designed to protect against discrimination in the extension of employee benefits does not permit waivers of participation.

Vesting

You are vested 100% in your account immediately upon enrollment. That means that once you have an account established in your name, the entire account belongs to you. However, you cannot access the money in your account until you terminate your employment.

Loans and Withdrawals

As a Defined Benefit Plan the Retirement Fund does not permit loans or in-service hardship withdrawals.

Rollovers

The Retirement Fund does not accept rollovers from other retirement plans.

Statements of Account

FOR ACTIVE PARTICIPANTS

When you are an Active Participant in the Retirement Fund you will receive a statement of account every 3 months. Statements are mailed to your home in February, May, August and November.

On a quarterly and year-to-date basis your statement will tell you how much your employing Association has contributed on your behalf, how much the Fund Match is and how much interest you have earned since your last statement.

FOR TERMINATED PARTICIPANTS

If you are no longer actively employed by a Participating Association, but you have chosen to leave your account with the Retirement Fund, it will continue to earn interest. You will receive a statement of account on an annual basis in February.

Your statement will show you how much interest you have earned since your last statement.

It is critical that you make sure that the Fund always has your current address.

If you have moved recently or have not received a statement in a while please contact us immediately so we may update your records.

...the YWCA Retirement Fund is the first pension fund for women and predates Social Security...