Rescinded [2009-04-01] - Pre-retirement Transition Leave Policy

Policy detailing criteria for pre-retirement transition leave policy in the federal Public Service.
Date modified: 1999-12-13

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The Treasury Board, as Employer of the Public Service, is committed to providing policies and provisions designed to help employees balance their work, personal, and family responsibilities. In keeping with our goal of being an employer of choice, this policy will assist in meeting business objectives while satisfying the growing needs of employees to improve their overall quality of life.

Flexibility in the workplace to accommodate work, personal and family needs, can result in benefits to organizations such as:

- a competitive edge for attracting and retaining highly skilled individuals

- reduced levels of employee stress and conflict

- higher levels of productivity and output and reduced absenteeism

- higher levels of employee satisfaction and motivation

- a more satisfying work environment.

Both managers and employees are responsible to ensure that operational needs of the organization are met and that neither productivity nor costs are negatively impacted by the application of this policy.

1. Effective date

This policy is effective as of February 1, 1999.

2. Policy objective

To provide flexibility in working arrangements to help employees better balance their work and personal lives and make the transition into retirement easier, while at the same time helping departmental managers reduce salary budgets.

3. Policy statement

It is the policy of the employer to create a work environment that allows employees the flexibility to better manage their work and personal lives while meeting operational requirements at a reasonable cost. This policy is one of several voluntary flexible working arrangements available to employees and managers.

4. Application

This policy applies to all employees for whom Treasury Board is the employer under the Public Service Staff Relations Act, Schedule I, Part I.

5. Policy requirements

Pre-retirement transition leave (PRTL) enables employees who are within two years of retirement to reduce the length of their workweek by up to 40 per cent. Pay for participating employees would be adjusted to reflect the shorter workweek, but their pension and benefits coverages, as well as premiums or contributions, would continue at pre-arrangement levels. Employees may take PRTL for up to two years, but must agree to resign at the end of the leave period. Under this policy, employees are responsible for their share of premiums or contributions because pension and benefits coverage will continue at pre-arrangement levels.

Pre-retirement transition leave is subject to managerial approval and discretion, based on operational feasibility (e.g. depending on the potential for adverse effects on service quality or costs).

To be eligible for this type of leave, employees must:

- be indeterminate (Executive group included) in a department for which the Treasury Board is the employer, under the Public Service Staff Relations Act, Schedule I, Part I.

- not be surplus at the start of the leave arrangement;

- be eligible for an unreduced pension at the start of the leave arrangement, or be within two years of becoming eligible for an unreduced pension (i.e. an employee who is 53 years of age with at least 28 years of pensionable service, or one who is 58 years old with at least 2 years of pensionable service at the time of retirement);

- agree to resign, effective at the end of the leave arrangement. The employer's acceptance of the resignation shall be conditional upon the leave arrangement being completed;

- agree not to work for the federal Public Service while on leave;

- agree to respect the Conflict of Interest Guidelines while on leave.

Changes to approved leave arrangements may be made only in rare and unforeseen circumstances.

Cancellation of approved leave arrangements will be approved only in exceptional or unforeseen circumstances. In the few cases where the cancellation is initiated by management, employees shall be reimbursed for certain reasonable expenses as determined by the employer (e.g. non-refundable portion of vacation contracts).

Employee-requested changes to, or cancellation of, leave arrangements may occur only prior to the end of the leave arrangement. Employee requests to change or cancel leave arrangements must be provided in writing with reasonable notice. Approval will be at the discretion of the manager.

6. Monitoring

The Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat will monitor participation in this program through the PWGSC pay system and the service-wide LWOP system.

7. References

- Collective agreements

- Terms and Conditions of Employment Regulations

- Leave without Pay Policy

- Income Tax Act and Regulations

- Financial Administration Act

- Public Service Superannuation Act

- Supplementary Retirement Benefits Act

- Public Service Staff Relations Act

- Conflict of Interest Guidelines

8. Enquiries

Enquiries relating to this policy should be referred to the responsible officer designated in departmental/organizational headquarters, who in turn may direct questions regarding interpretation to the Human Resources Branch of the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat.

9. Definitions

Leave arrangement (Entente de congé) - This is the period of time (up to two years) that an employee is participating in the pre-retirement transition leave program.

Leave (Congé) - This is the leave without pay portion of the leave arrangement. It will be treated as leave without pay with respect to pay, deductions, allowances, other leave, benefits, and pensions.

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