Carpenters Individual Account Pension Plan
Article 2: Participation, Vesting and Eligibility for Benefits
Any individual who is or becomes an Employee after June 1, 1981, shall commence participation in the Plan beginning with the initial hour for which a Contribution is required to the Trust and shall continue to be a Participant until such time that all benefits due under the Plan to the Participant or Participant's beneficiaries have been fully paid and any non-vested Contributions are forfeited in a zero dollar distribution. A Participant shall receive Credited Service toward retirement benefits as provided in Article 1.9, based upon Hours of Service completed during the calendar year. Sole proprietors and partners are not eligible to participate in the Plan.
- Supplemental, Elective
Contribution and Rollover Subaccounts. A Participant shall be fully vested in
his Supplemental Subaccount, Elective
Contribution Subaccount and Rollover
Subaccount at all times, and those subaccounts shall be nonforfeitable.
- Regular and Employer
Contribution Subaccount. A Participant shall
become fully vested in and have a
nonforfeitable right to benefits from his
Regular Subaccount and Employer
- Effective January 1, 1989, when the Participant completes five (5) years of Credited Service including at least one (1) year of Credited Service in this Plan; or
- Effective for a Participant who does not have a Permanent Break in Service as of January 1, 2007 and has at least one Hour of Service in this Plan on or after January 1, 2007, when the Participant completes three (3) years of Credited Service including at least one (1) year of Credited Service in this Plan; or
- When the Participant earns at least one (1) Hour of Service in this Plan prior to January 1, 1989 and earns one (1) Year of Service in this Plan prior to January 1, 1990 without a Permanent Break in Service; or
- When the Participant attains his Normal Retirement Date.
- Contributions for Vested Participant. All Contributions made on behalf of a vested Participant shall be non-forfeitable.
A Participant who is not vested in his Regular and Employer Contribution Subaccounts who fails to complete 500 or more Hours of Service in a Plan Year shall have a One-Year Break in Service as to each such Plan Year unless the Participant is granted a Leave of Absence under Article 2.6 below. If a Participant incurs a One-Year Break in Service and elects to receive a distribution of the balance of his Supplemental, Elective Contribution and Rollover Subaccounts, he will be deemed to have received a zero dollar distribution from the Regular and Employer Contribution Subaccounts, and all rights under this Plan shall be forfeited unless recovered pursuant to Article 2.5.
A non-vested Participant in the Regular and Employer Contribution Subaccounts who incurs one or more One-Year Breaks in Service, whose Credited Service prior to the first One-Year Break in Service is not restored under Article 2.5, or who is not granted a Leave of Absence under Article 2.6 will incur a Permanent Break in Service, and will forfeit permanently all previously accrued pension benefits in the Regular and Employer Contribution Subaccounts.
Notwithstanding any other provision herein, if after incurring one or more One-Year Breaks in Service a Participant earns 500 or more Hours of Service during a subsequent Plan Year commencing after December 31, 1988, the Participant's previously forfeited rights shall be recovered if such Hours of Service are earned before he incurs five (5) consecutive One-Year Breaks in Service; provided such credits shall not be reinstated until the first Plan Year after which the Participant earns 500 or more Hours of Service in this Plan or a Related Plan.
A Participant who is absent in one of the following categories for a period of six (6) months or more, may be allowed a Leave of Absence for one of the reasons listed below, but only for such period as stated below:
- Absence due to service with the armed forces of the United States as required by federal law;
- Absence due to disability, for up to two (2) years, subject to further consideration after that time if the disabling condition continues, provided the Participant submits proof of such disability satisfactory to the Trustees;
- Absence while serving as an employee or official of the Union for up to three (3) years;
- Absence while on each Maternity/Paternity Leave, as defined below, up to a maximum of 501 Hours of Service for each such leave. Under this subsection (d), Participants on a Maternity/Paternity Leave will be credited with Hours of Service toward vesting and to avoid a Break in Service. Hours of Service will be credited for the specific period of absence, except that all Hours of Service will be credited to the Plan Year in which the absence begins if necessary to avoid a One-Year Break in Service in that year; otherwise, they will be credited to the immediately following Plan Year. For purposes of this subsection (d), a Participant shall be deemed to be on Maternity/Paternity Leave if the Participant is absent from work by reason of the pregnancy of the Participant, by reason of the birth of a child of the Participant, by reason of the placement of a child with the Participant in connection with the adoption of the child by such Participant, or for the purpose of caring for such child during the period immediately following such birth or placement;
- Non-participation in this Plan by an Employee who is not vested in the Regular and Employer Contribution Subaccounts, but who has at least one (1) previous year of Credited Service in this Plan during any time after June 1, 1986, when the Employee's employer was not required to make Contributions to this Plan but did make contributions to the Carpenters Health and Security Trust of Western Washington on behalf of the Employee. Under this subsection (e), the Employee shall be entitled to Hours of Service toward vesting and to avoid a Break in Service.
A Participant may elect annually to make Elective Contributions to the Plan for the succeeding Plan Year in increments of $1.00 up to a maximum of $8.00 per hour of Covered Service, provided the Collective Bargaining Agreement or the terms of a written contribution agreement between an Individual Employer and the Trustees allow for Elective Contributions.
A Participant may elect annually to make Elective Contributions to the Plan for the succeeding Plan Year in increments of $1.00 up to a maximum of $4.00 per hour of Covered Service, provided the Collective Bargaining Agreement or the terms of a written contribution agreement between an Individual Employer and the Trustees allow for Elective Contributions.
Provided the Collective Bargaining Agreement or the terms of a written contribution agreement between an Individual Employer and the Trustees allow for Elective Contributions, a Participant may elect annually to make Elective Contributions to the Plan in increments of $1.00 up to a maximum of $9.00 per hour of Covered Service. Effective for Plan Years on and after January 1, 2018, a Catch-Up eligible Participant may elect to make a Catch-Up Contribution up to an additional $3 per hour of Covered Service for such Plan Year, subject to the limit of Code Section 414(v)(2)(C).
- Each Participant's election must be timely submitted to the Plan in writing, in advance of the Plan Year to which it applies, in the manner prescribed by the Trustees. Notwithstanding the foregoing, an individual who first becomes eligible (under a Collective Bargaining Agreement or other agreement) to make Elective Contributions after the annual election period has ended may elect to begin Elective Contributions as of the first day of the month immediately following the date he is first eligible. A Participant's election shall be evergreen and continue to be in effect until the Participant either makes a new election during a succeeding annual election period, or notifies the Plan in writing that he wishes to discontinue Elective Contributions on a prospective basis.
- Deduction of Participant Contributions. Elective Contributions shall be made by regular payroll deductions by a Participant's employer. Elective Contributions that are withheld by an employer will be paid to the Fund as soon as they can be reasonably segregated from the employer's assets but not later than fifteen (15) business days after the end of the calendar month in which the Contributions are withheld.
- Discontinuance of Elective Contributions. A Participant may elect to discontinue his Elective Contributions prospectively at anytime during the Plan Year, provided that he cannot elect to resume Elective Contributions until the next annual election period.
A Participant who retires, as defined in Article 1.25, will be eligible to receive his vested retirement benefits under this Plan:
- On the Participant's Normal Retirement Date;
- On the Participant's Early Retirement Date;
- When found by the Trustees to be entitled to Total and Permanent Disability benefits in accordance with Article 2.9 hereof.
A vested Participant who is Totally and Permanently Disabled and has earned at least 750 Hours of Service in this Plan or in a Related Plan in the three (3) consecutive Plan Year period prior to the Participant's disability, shall be entitled to Total and Permanent Disability benefits.
Total and Permanent Disability, for the purpose of this Plan, will mean disability by accidental bodily injury or disease which on the basis of medical evidence can be assumed to be permanent and continuous during the remainder of the Participant's lifetime, and which renders the Participant incapable of performing any and every duty pertinent to his occupation as a Carpenter. After benefits have been paid to the Participant for twenty-four (24) months, the Participant must then be incapable of engaging in any gainful occupation for which the Participant is found to be fitted by training, experience and abilities.
Disability Retirement income will not be payable to a Participant where the disability results from an intentional self-inflicted injury or the habitual use of narcotics or alcoholic beverages.
Disability will not be considered established unless it has continued for a period of not less than six (6) consecutive months. The Trustees may, however, at their discretion, waive the six (6) month period.
It shall be the responsibility of the Participant to submit satisfactory proof of such disability to the Trustees. Before ruling on any disability, the Trustees may designate a qualified physician of their choice to examine the Participant.
The Trustees may, from time to time, require satisfactory proof of continued disability. If the Trustees determine that a Participant's disability has ceased prior to his attainment of age sixty-five (65), Disability Retirement income will stop with the payment for the month in which the disability ceased. Remaining payments, if any, due to the Participant as a disability benefit will be canceled. The Participant will be vested in the unpaid balance of the Individual Account to the same extent as prior to the Plan's payment of the disability retirement benefit.
When a Participant who is receiving Disability Retirement income reaches the Normal Retirement Date, no further proof of continued disability will be required.
Last Updated: 07/21/2021