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Terminating Employment

Plan Members

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If you terminate your employment with HRM or one of the Plan’s other Participating Employers, your employer will notify the Pension Plan Office on your behalf. Within 6 weeks of your last day worked, you will receive a Termination Statement outlining your HRM Pension Plan entitlement.

Your entitlement upon termination will depend on whether or not you have met one of the Plan's retirement eligibility criteria. See the section of the website on Retirement Eligibility Dates to determine if you are eligible for an immediate pension.  

Termination Benefit Options for Non-Retirement Eligible Members

If you terminate from the Plan, and have not yet reached retirement eligibility, you will have the choice of leaving your benefits in the Plan and receiving a deferred pension or transferring the commuted value of your pension to a Locked-In Retirement Account (LIRA) or to another pension plan. More details on these two options are provided below.

Deferred Pension

You may elect, upon termination, to receive a pension commencing at your Normal Retirement Date and payable for your lifetime. Although your deferred pension would normally start on your Normal Retirement Date, you may elect to start your pension on the first day of any month after you have reached your Earliest Retirement Date. If you choose this option, your pension will be reduced by ½ of a percent for each month that your pension commencement date precedes your Normal Retirement Date. 

Lump-Sum Transfer

Should you terminate employment before becoming retirement eligible, the Plan permits you to transfer the commuted value of your pension benefit to:

  • A Locked-In Retirement Account (LIRA transfer);
  • An insurance company for the purchase of an annuity; or
  • Another registered pension plan

Note: a commuted value represents the value, as a lump-sum, of the lifetime benefit payable to a member upon termination calculated based on a prescribed set of assumptions. 

Termination Benefit Options for Retirement Eligible Members

If you are retirement eligible when you terminate you will need to decide if you would like to take an immediate pension or leave your entitlement in the Plan until you are ready to retire. If you are retirement eligible, you are not able to transfer the commuted value of your pension out of the Plan.

What Happens if I’m Rehired After I Terminate?

If you terminate employment and are subsequently rehired within twelve months, you have the option of returning any monies (plus applicable interest) which have been paid out of the Plan on your behalf and having your HRM Pension Plan service reinstated. If this situation applies to you, please ensure that your employer notifies the HRM Pension Plan Office.

Important Information about your Termination Options

There are certain prescribed rules that govern how termination benefits can be paid out of registered pension plans. These rules include;

  • Locking-In of Pension Monies
  • Maximum Transfer Limits
  • Excess Contribution Amounts 
  • Impact of Plan Solvency Position
  • Small Benefit Provisions
  • RRSP Contribution Room Impacts

Depending on your individual circumstances, these rules could impact your entitlement. Any impact will be outlined on your Termination Statement, which will be provided by the Pension Plan Office.

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