Receiving Your Benefit
If you Experience a Financial Hardship
The Plan allows for two "partial types of withdrawals before you are eligible to take a retirement or break-in-service distribution of your Annuity Fund benefit:
1. Withdrawals from your rollover account (if you have established one)
2. Hardship Withdrawals
Both active and terminated participants may take withdrawals from their rollover accounts. Active participants and alternate payees under QDROs may take hardship withdrawals. Alternate Payees may also take immediate withdrawals.
Hardship Withdrawals - Conditions
A hardship withdrawal must meet the following conditions:
- The withdrawal must be necessary to relieve one or more of the following immediate and heavy financial hardships:
- Expenses for medical care which would be deductible under the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code for you, your spouse, or an individual you claim as a dependent on your Federal tax return, including withdrawals needed to pay medical insurance premiums or obtain medical care
- Post-secondary education expenses for up to 12 months at an accredited institution for you, your spouse, or an individual you claim as a dependent on your Federal tax return
- Costs, other than mortgage payments, directly related to the purchase of your primary residence (excluding motor vehicles). This category includes situations where you purchase the interest of your former spouse in a residence which you certify is (or will be) your primary residence
- Payments necessary to prevent your eviction from your principal residence or foreclosure on the mortgage of your principal residence. This category includes situations where statutory rights of redemption are being exercised in a timely manner
- Payments necessary to avoid repossession of a motor vehicle owned by you that you use as your primary transportation to and from work (or your spouses motor vehicle used as their primary transportation to and from work). This category also includes situations where statutory rights of redemption are being exercised in a timely manner
- Funeral or burial expenses incurred by you because of the death of your spouse, child or parent, your spouse's parent, or an individual you claim as a dependent on your Federal tax return
- Exhaustion of any and all unemployment benefits to which you are entitled, including benefits from the I.U.O.E. Local No. 478 Supplemental Unemployment Benefits Fund and State Unemployment Compensation, subject to a specific cap described in the section entitled Amount You May Withdraw
- Payment for repairs to a primary residence resulting from a natural disaster (damage due to fire, flood or a hurricane) which would be deductible under the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code
- Payments to cover overdue state or federal income taxes, and interest and penalties related to those taxes (provided that this category may only be utilized once in an individual's lifetime) once in a lifetime
- Amount needed to repay or reimburse an individual or entity who is the victim of a crime committed by you, your spouse or individual claimed as a dependent on your federal income tax return.
Additional Hardship Withdrawal Rules
In connection with any financial hardship, the need must be one you cannot reasonably meet from any other resources available to you. These sources include:
- Reimbursement or compensation by insurance,
- Reasonable liquidation of your assets (or assets of your spouse or minor children)
- Stopping your deferral contributions (if any) to the Plan
- Borrowing money from other individuals (such as relatives)
- Borrowing money from commercial sources on reasonable commercial terms
- The type of withdrawal mentioned above from your rollover account (if any) in the Plan
What if my Hardship Withdrawal Request Doesn't Meet the Listed Conditions?
Our Annuity Plan staff understands that in difficult economic times, you and your family may have very real immediate and heavy financial needs, such as paying bills and expenses (electricity, oil, gas, food, etc.), buying needed items for your home (appliances, a furnace, a water heater, furniture, etc.) or paying off high interest credit cards.
Amount You May Withdraw
One very basic rule is that any hardship withdrawal is limited to the actual dollar amount you need to satisfy the financial hardship, plus any applicable taxes and penalties (see Taxes and Penalties on Hardship Withdrawals below).
- 50 percent of your regular and/or deferral contribution account balances (as determined above), or
- $400 a week times the number of weeks until you will again be eligible for State Unemployment Compensation (to a maximum of 26 weeks).
Your hardship withdrawal for any purpose other than post-secondary education expenses or expenses for medical insurance premiums will be paid to you in a single lump sum.
Medical withdrawals: Payments for medical insurance premiums may be made in a lump sum or in installments, depending upon the premium due dates and any nondiscriminatory procedures established by the Trustees.
You may also include in your request the amounts you will need to pay state or local income taxes, any Federal income tax liability that won't be covered by the 10 percent withholding, and the possible 10 percent penalty for a hardship withdrawal taken before you reach age 59½.
- Contact the Fund Office for information on how to apply for a hardship withdrawal and what documentation you will need to supply
- Complete the application form and return it with any required documentation to the Fund Office
When You Retire
Once you retire, you can request the Fund Office forward you an application, should you require a distribution. With the application form, the Fund Office will send you a description of the payment form options.
If you are married and you wish to choose a payment form other than the automatic 50 percent joint-and-survivor annuity, your time frame for doing so is the last 180 days before payments start. Remember that your spouse will need to consent to your rejection of the 50 percent joint-and-survivor annuity and your selection of a different payment form in the presence of a Plan representative or notary public.
- Call or write to the Fund Office for an application for benefits,
- Consider the Annuity Plan's various distribution options and your financial needs in retirement. You may also wish to consult with a professional advisor,
- Submit your completed application to the Fund Office,
- Allow at least one month for processing. If you wish to utilize the 7-day exception, which essentially allows you to receive a distribution in about 7-10 business days, you and your spouse, if any, will need to complete an appropriate waiver.