November 4, 2002
|Pension Fund Board of Trustees Adopt New Break-in-Service Repair Rule|
We are very happy to announce that in response to a number of member appeals and with the proactive support of Actors' Equity Association, the Trustees of the Equity-League Pension Fund have adopted a new rule that will restore lost pension credits to many performers. The restored credit will give pension eligibility to many performers who would otherwise not be eligible for any pension benefit. In other situations the restored credit will increase the amount of the pension benefit awards. We estimate that up to 4,500 performers may benefit from the new rule!
Under the pension rules in effect prior to 1992, if a non-vested performer had an extended period of unemployment before returning to work, the break could have had the effect of permanently canceling all previous pension credit.
Under the new rule, any performer who had at least five years of service prior to the period of unemployment that caused the loss of credit will have the lost credit restored if they return to work after December 31, 1991 and earn one year of pension service.
Pension benefits produced by the restored years of service will be applied for benefit payments payable on or after January 1, 2003. There will be no retroactive payments or adjustments for periods of time before then, regardless of when the performer reached retirement age.
The five years of service prior to the break that is required for eligibility for the new rule must be years for which contributions were made to the Pension Fund, and the "two for one" rule will not apply.
If you have any questions about this new rule or believe it may apply to you, do not hesitate to contact the Fund Office - contact information is on the web at http://www.equityleague.org/contact.html.