Picture yourself as an OMERS member

FAQs

Can I make up for the time I was not a member?

The time you worked for your OMERS employer before you are enrolled in the OMERS Plan can be purchased and converted into credited service. Increasing your credited service will increase your pension and may allow you to retire earlier without a reduction. You may also have other service that you can buy back and convert to OMERS service for example, a period of service from another pension plan that you cashed or transferred out.

Note: If you decide to wait and buy back this service later in your career, it can become more costly.

How does OMERS differ from RRSPs?

OMERS is a defined benefit pension plan. This means you will receive a reliable, lifetime stream of income based on your years of service and earnings. Once retired, your pension doesn’t fluctuate like other investments may, so you know exactly how much you will receive every month for life.

How do my part-time earnings affect my future pension?

When you work less than full time, OMERS will annualize your earnings to calculate your pension. This means we use the equivalent of what you would have earned had you worked full time.
Example: Emily works 18.5 hours a week, compared to a 37-hour full-time schedule. Her “best five” earnings are $35,000. To calculate her pension, we would annualize her “best five” earnings and use $70,000. 

What are my choices once I join? Can I opt out of the Plan?

As long as you continue to work for your OMERS employer, your membership in the OMERS Plan will continue – there are no minimum work hours or earnings limits. You cannot opt out of membership as long as you are working for your OMERS employer. 

How much does it cost?

You will contribute a percentage of your earnings to help pay for your future pension. Your employer will contribute an equal amount. These contributions will fund a portion of your pension. Investment earnings of the OMERS Fund will pay the balance.  OMERS contribution rates

I want to join the OMERS Plan. What’s the next step? 

Complete the Offer of OMERS membership form in the booklet your employer provided when you were offered membership. Give the form to your employer and they will send your information to OMERS. If you need a copy of the form, contact your employer.

I’m not ready to join the OMERS Plan. Should I advise my employer?

Yes, it’s important that your employer have a record of your decision. Complete the Offer of OMERS membership form in the booklet your employer provided when you were offered membership. If you need a copy of the form, contact your employer.

If I decline membership now can I join the OMERS Plan later?

Yes, you can join in the future if your earnings and/or hours worked still qualify for membership in the OMERS Plan; however, it becomes your responsibility to contact your employer to initiate enrolment.