What are my responsibilities as an employer participating in MEBP?
Your responsibilities as a MEBP participating employer are:
- establishing & maintaining an accurate accounting of records of employment, earnings, service, prior service and insurance in force;
- informing employees of their benefits and where to obtain applicable information regarding MEBP;
- enrolling employees as soon as eligibility requirements are met;
- completing and submitting all necessary forms to the MEBP office;
- ensuring employees complete necessary forms and maintaining a complete and up to date file of those forms;
- deducting and remitting contributions;
- handling all day-to-day relationships with members;
- distributing to members all literature and other information provided by MEBP;
- keeping payroll staff informed of any changes to the Plans or administrative procedures.
- ensuring all applicable staff is trained for their responsibilities of MEBP.
Do all employees have to join MEBP?
Enrollment in MEBP program is compulsory and a condition of employment for employees working under a MEBP participating employer upon meeting the eligibility requirements.
The eligibility requirements for compulsory enrollment are:
- A full-time employee, under age 71, must join on the first day of the pay period following completion of the probationary period of employment, if any. If there is no probationary period, enrollment is immediately on hire.
- When a part-time, seasonal or temporary* employee has earned more than ¼ of the year’s maximum Canada Pension Plan (CPP) earnings (including overtime) in two consecutive numerical years, the employee must join MEBP at the start of the first pay-period after the eligibility was met.
* A part-time, seasonal or temporary employee, under age 71, who has completed the probationary period of employment, if any, may join 'voluntarily' prior to a 'compulsory participation' date and regardless of the amount of earnings. The employer must comply with the employee's request to voluntarily join the plan.
The following persons may be exempt from participating in MEBP Plans:
- an employee who is a student on a substantially full-time basis or,
- an employee who is a member of a religious group which has one of its articles of faith the belief that members of the group are precluded from being members of a pension Plan (contact MEBP office) or,
- an employee who retired from the employment of a participating MEBP employer and is in receipt of a pension but subsequently returns to work for the same or new participating MEBP employer. Please contact the MEBP Administration Office.
The Enrollment Form required can be found in under FORMS. These are:
- Enrollment Form – Pension & Disability Income Plans (Form #20)
- Pension Plan – Beneficiary Designation and Change (Form #25)
Employees who work for Employers that participate in the MEBP Insurance Plan, must also complete:
- Blue Cross/MEBP Individual Application for Group Insurance Plan (if employer participates in the Insurance plan)
- Application/Change – Voluntary Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance (Voluntary AD&D – Form 78)
For more information in regard to new employee enrollments and instructions on how to complete the forms, refer to the New Employee section of the Employers Administration Guide
What are Base Hours and why are they important?
A member’s MEBP pension benefit is determined using their pensionable earnings and pensionable credited service.
Pensionable credited service is calculated as follows: pensionable hours worked divided by Base Hours. If the Base Hours reported to MEBP for a member are incorrect, their pension benefit will also be wrong. The pension benefit calculated not only affects what the member will receive at retirement, but it also affects the PA calculation which determines how much a person can contribute to an RRSP.
So what are Base Hours? Base Hours are the annual hours that a full time employee would work in a given position or job. A full time position for MEBP’s purposes is considered to be someone who works a minimum of 6 hours per day, 5 days a week.
The base hours should be the same for all employees who do the same job/position regardless if they are full time, part time, seasonal, etc. They do not change unless the employee moves to a different job/position that has different base hours or a decision is made to change the base hours for all employees in a particular job class.
Example: You have an office clerk position. The full time requirement for this office clerk position is 75.0 hours per pay period (assuming 7.50 hours/day and a bi-weekly payroll of 26 pay periods per year). Therefore the annual Base Hours for this office clerk position are 75.0 hours x 26 pay periods = 1950.0.
Here is an example of how this Base Hour is used by MEBP. You may have 2 office clerks. One is full-time, the other is part-time. Your full-time office clerk has worked 1950.0 pensionable hours for the year. Therefore, her pensionable credited service for the year is 1950.0 worked /1950.0 Base = 1.000 full year. Your part time office clerk worked 750.0 pensionable hours for the year. Her pensionable credited service for the year is 750.0 worked/1950 Base = 0.3846 of a full year.
The most commonly used base hours for 26 pay periods are: 1820, 1950 and 2080. These hours may be slightly different for employers who pay on a semi-monthly or monthly basis or for employers who may have 27 pay periods in a particular year.
What are the contribution rates for MEBP?
Employers NOT PARTICIPATING in MEBP Disability Income Plan (DIP):
8.4% of pensionable earnings up the Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE)
9.6% of pensionable earnings in excess of the YMPE
Employer matches employee contributions
Employers PARTICIPATING in the MEBP Disability Income Plan:
8.3% of pensionable earnings up the Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE)
9.5% of pensionable earnings in excess of the YMPE
Employer matches employee contributions
Basic Life Plan (includes Basic AD&D):
$0.22 per $1,000 of insurance per month. Note: the employer is responsible for no less than 1/3 of the insurance contribution unless special cost sharing arrangements have been made involving the MEBP DIP.
Optional Life Insurance:
MEBP staff will inform you of the amount of coverage and the contributions required for members who have elected Optional Insurance. MEBP will also advise you of any future changes that may be required to be made to the coverage amount and/or contributions. Coverage and deductions stop once the member turns 65 year of age.
Family Life Insurance:
The Family Insurance contribution is $2.10 per month and is paid in whole by the member. The first deduction will cover eligible family members for the current month. Coverage deductions stop once the member turns 65 years of age.
Voluntary AD & D:
The monthly cost of Voluntary Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance is shown in the following table and is paid entirely by the employee:
|Principal Sum Selected For Yourself||Employee Only Plan||Employee And Family Plan|
Retail Sales Tax
An 7% Retail Sales Tax (RST) is to be applied to all group insurance contributions, deducted from employees and remitted to MEBP and insurance contributions paid by the employer on behalf of employees. The tax applies to Basic Life, Family Life, Optional Life and Voluntary Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance.
The RST is applicable to residents of Manitoba only.
For more information in regard to contributions and examples on how to calculate contributions, refer the Contributions (General Information) section of the Employers Administration Guide.
What if an employee was missed being enrolled in MEBP?
If an employee was overlooked being enrolled in the Plan when they had met the compulsory eligibility enrollment requirements, enroll this employee immediately and begin deducting and remitting the applicable contributions.
Upon receipt of the enrollment forms, MEBP staff will advise the employer of what the correct enrollment date should have been and the ARREARs contributions that are owing to the Plan(s). Once this amount is determined, the employer is responsible to remit the arrears owing to MEBP immediately. A late enrollment fee will also be charged to the employer.
Do I need to advise MEBP if an employee is retiring, terminating employment or has passed away?
Yes, you have to advise MEBP if a MEBP Member has retired, terminated employment or has passed away.
To advise MEBP of the event, an employer is required to submit a Separation Notice (Form 10) to the MEBP office as soon as possible. This form can be submitted on line. Upon receipt of this form, the MEBP office will prepare and send the applicable payment information and forms to the member or their beneficiary.
In the event of a member’s death, if the employee participated in the Group Insurance Plan, please contact MEBP staff for instructions. A Notice of Insurance Coverage at Date of Death (Form 73) will need to be completed and submitted to MEBP.
For more information in regard to these events and instructions on to complete the forms, refer to the applicable section of the Employers Administration Guide.
Can an employee work past their Normal Retirement Age of age 65?
Yes, an employee can continue to work past the normal retirement age of 65. However, their participation in the MEBP plans may change.
A member is able to make contributions to the pension plan until the end of the year they attain age 71. Pension contributions are to cease no later than December 30th of the year the member turns 71. The employee can continue to work past this date, but their active pension plan membership will end and they will be provided with the payment options in regard to their pension benefit. The employer must submit a Separation Notice (Form 10) to the MEBP office with a separation date no later than December 30th of the applicable year in order for the MEBP office to determine the pension benefit.
Basic Life coverage and deductions- continue as normal to age 71. If the employee continues to work past age 71, the coverage will convert to a retired member’s coverage.
Optional and Family Life coverage and deductions – will terminate at age 65.
Voluntary Accidental Death and Dismemberment remains in place until the member terminates or retires from the Pension Plan.
Disability Income Plan:
Contributions to DIP and eligibility for DIP benefits cease 18 weeks prior to attainment of age 65 (64 years and 8 months)
For more information, refer to the Working Beyond 65/Age 71 section of the Employers Administration Guide.
When will I receive the Pension Adjustment (PA) amounts that need to be included on our employees T4 slips?
Upon receipt of your completed Year End Package, MEBP staff will review the payroll information submitted. Once all issues have been addressed (if any), MEBP will calculate the PA amounts and forward them to the employer.
The Year End Packages are reviewed and PAs are calculated on a first come first served basis. Please submit your Year End Packages by the deadline date that will be provided to ensure that you receive your PAs in sufficient time for T4 processing.
Where can I find additional MEBP administration and benefits?
For additional information regarding the administration of MEBP and or benefits and coverage, please refer the Employers Administration Guide and the applicable Benefit Booklet.
If you require information that you have been unable to find in the Administration Guide or Booklets, please contact our office.