- You become an Active Participant on the first day you work on a job for which contributions are required to be made to the Pension Plan on your behalf.
- You cease to be an Active Participant on December 31 of any year in which you do not work at least 400 hours of covered employment in the calendar year. If you again begin working in covered employment, you will again become an Active Participant.
Eligibility to Participate
You are eligible to participate in the Pension Plan when you begin working in covered employment in a job covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement (or other written agreement) between your employer and IBEW Local No. 26 that requires your employer to make contributions to the Pension Plan on your behalf. You will be entitled to receive pension benefits when you meet the requirements established by the Plan for a Normal, Deferred or other form of benefit.
Coverage under this Plan also is provided to certain employees of Local No. 26, the Local JATC, Inside Wiremen, Residential Wiremen, Teledata Technicians and employees of the Electrical Welfare Trust Fund, pursuant to written agreements between these organizations and the Pension Fund. The eligibility rules for participation in the Plan may be different depending on the employee’s classification. See your Collective Bargaining Agreement or participation agreement for more details.
If this is your “home” plan and you have participated in this Plan while working in this area, you may be able to earn credit under this Plan while working in the jurisdictions of other IBEW Local unions. For more information about reciprocity and the Electronic Reciprocal Transfer System (ERTS), please contact Local 26 and/or the Fund Office.
If You Have Ownership or Interest in a Business
You are not eligible to participate in this Plan if you own, or acquire an ownership interest in, any company that is a contributing employer to the Plan unless you meet the “bargaining unit alumni” exception described below and are covered by a participation agreement between the company and the Fund. If you are an Active Employee at the time that you acquire an ownership interest a contributing employer, your status as an Active Employee will cease on the date on which you acquire such an interest, absent participation agreement language to the contrary and you will not receive credit under the Plan for any employment thereafter, even if such employment is of the type that would otherwise qualify as covered employment.
You will not lose any credit for service already performed as an Active Employee, unless such service is canceled under the Break-in-Service rules.
You will be considered to own, or have an ownership interest in, a contributing employer if you are the sole proprietor of the contributing employer or you own or control, directly or indirectly, 15% or more of a partnership. You will not be disqualified from participation if you “indirectly” own an interest in a contributing employer because that employer is owned, in full or in part, by your spouse, lineal descendant, brother, or sister, or if you are a beneficiary of a trust that owns such interest, provided that your only relationship with the employer is as an employee performing work covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Notwithstanding the above-described rule, if you are a “Bargaining Unit Alumni,” meaning that you formerly worked in covered employment as an Active Participant in the Plan and earned a vested pension under the Plan, and you now work for a contributing employer in a capacity not covered by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, you may be eligible to participate in the Pension Plan under a separate participation agreement.