Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to become a member of the Retirement Fund?
How does an employee contribute to the Retirement Fund?
Are the matching contributions made by the Authority applied to the member’s balance in the Fund?
What is the rate of interest earned by the member on his/her contributions? Does the member continue to earn interest after his/her employment with the Authority is terminated by reason of retirement, resignation or discharge?
What is creditable service?
How do part-time employees accrue creditable service?
Is the employment date with the Authority the same as the membership date in the Fund?
How do part-time employees accrue creditable service?
When can a member retire?
How is a member’s retirement allowance determined?
What is the date shown on the monthly retirement checks and when are they mailed to the retirees?
Does a member have a decision to make on how the pension will be paid?
If a member leaves the employ of the MBTA, what happens to the Authority’s contributions made to the Fund on the employee’s behalf?
If a retirement benefit is sent direct deposit (ACH – wire transfer) to a bank or credit union, when is the benefit deposited into the retiree’s account and when are the funds available?
Once a member has retired and elected either the maximum benefit or elected an option, can this election be changed?
How does unused sickleave affect the retirement allowance?
In the event a retiree is divorced/widowed, can he/she drop the option elected or change it in favor of a new spouse?
Can a member buy any service for which credit is not being received?
Who can an active or retired member contact with specific questions concerning health and life insurance benefits?
Can a member withdraw any money from the Fund and pay it back at a later date with interest?
Can I receive creditable service in the MBTA Retirement Fund for service with any other Federal, State, or local government agency?
If the surviving spouse is eligible to receive a monthly benefit, how soon does he/she begin receiving the benefit? Does he/she have to wait until the member would have reached age 65?
How are changes made in the Pension Plan?
If I leave the employ of the Authority and return at a later date, am I eligible to “Buy Back” my prior service?
How does a member qualify for a benefit under the Vesting Provision of the Fund?
When is a member eligible to receive a benefit under the Vesting Provision of the Fund?
Under what circumstances is the spouse of a member required to sign a spousal consent form?
Are retirement contributions deducted from Workers’ Compensation payments? Does the time out on Workers’ Compensation count as creditable membership service?
Workers’ Compensation Offset: Does my receipt of Workers’ Compensation payments affect my disability retirement benefit?
Can taxes be withheld from my pension benefit?
If a member has a question concerning the Fund or would like to obtain an estimate of his/her retirement benefit, whom should he/she contact for the correct answer?