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The Pension Puzzle: Your Complete Guide to Government Benefits, RRSPs, and Employer Plans

Overview

An "owner's manual" for every Canadian with a pension plan.

 Millions of Canadians are covered by pension plans in one form or another-whether that's CPP or a company plan, or personal RRSPs. But pensions are the benefit least understood by employees. They're confusing and complex, but understanding pensions is crucial to every Canadian's financial security in retirement. Since its initial publication, The Pension Puzzle has become the definitive book on the subject. Now completely revised and updated, The ...

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Overview

An "owner's manual" for every Canadian with a pension plan.

 Millions of Canadians are covered by pension plans in one form or another-whether that's CPP or a company plan, or personal RRSPs. But pensions are the benefit least understood by employees. They're confusing and complex, but understanding pensions is crucial to every Canadian's financial security in retirement. Since its initial publication, The Pension Puzzle has become the definitive book on the subject. Now completely revised and updated, The Pension Puzzle remains a true owner's manual for anyone with a pension plan. The Pension Puzzle is not just for those about to retire. It's for every working Canadian who needs to make decisions about their pension plan and how it affects their financial future.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
"Spending each day as you choose and getting monthly cheques to pay for it is neither boring nor painful, yet the mention of pensions brings on tensions. Bruce Cohen and Brian FitzGerald are right on the money with a sensible, straightforward, and practical guide to how much you can expect, where it will come from, and whether it will be enough. Don’t leave work without it."

—Michael Kane, The Vancouver Sun

"If you’ve been looking for a basic book on pensions, this is it. The authors help empower the average Canadian with solid, plain-English information, and with tips and worksheets, that cover off a variety of retirement programs and scenarios."

—Deborah Lomow, Senior Vice-President Corporate Pensions, Scotiabank

"Cohen and FitzGerald have done the impossible—they’ve made pension plans understandable. The financial planning puzzle no longer has a missing piece. Excellent and thorough!

—David Chilton, Author of The Wealthy Barber

"The Pension Puzzle is a wonderful reference manual that takes some of the fear out of life after your corporate paycheque."

—Ray Turchansky, The Edmonton Journal

"In their exceptional book, The Pension Puzzle, Bruce Cohen and Brian FitzGerald effectively itemize and explain the various components of funding a retirement. The book also outlines the opportunity advisors have to help Canadians sort through their options."

—Darin Diehl, Advisor’s Edge

"[Cohen and FitzGerald] deliver the goods—the full monty, so to speak—on pension plans and what you can expect from them, whatever your stage in life."

—P.J. Robertson, Forum, the magazine of the Canadian Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors

"This book is the key that Canadians have been waiting for to unlock the pension puzzle. Reading it should leave you with a better understanding of what you need to do to build on the basic social security levels to achieve lifetime self-sufficiency. It should be required reading for everyone in, or about to enter, the workplace."

—Glorianne Stromberg, Investor Advocate and Former Ontario Securities Commissioner

"Clear answers to the two most important retirement questions: How much money will you need, and where will it come from? Before you invest in an RRSP, read this book."

—Rob Carrick, The Globe and Mail, and Author of E-Investing and The Online Investor’s Companion

"[The Pension Puzzle] will assist organizations to educate employees on calculating how much income they will need for retirement, as well as determining where that money will come from."

—HR Professional, the magazine of the Human Resources Professional Association of Ontario (HRPAO)

"It has always been difficult to find any book on pensions that is comprehensive and yet understandable to the average Canadian. This excellent book provides clear, readable definitions and descriptions of complex pension terms and issues, provides tips and worksheets to help the reader apply the information, and wraps the whole book in an historical context that is both honest and fascinating. It is an easy read, almost like talking to a very knowledgeable friend. It is a self-help book of the highest order."

—Gretchen van Riesen, Senior Director, Pension and Benefits Policy, HR, CIBC

"Cohen and FitzGerald cut through the sometimes tedious pension lexicon and provide an easy-to-read, yet comprehensive analysis and commentary on Canada’s multi-layered pension system."

—Jim Rogers, Chair, The Rogers Group Financial Advisors Ltd., and Past Chair, Canadian Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors

"This book is destined to become the definitive reference book on retirement plans for advisors and their clients."

—Jonathan Chevreau, The National Post

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470834305
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/2/2004
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Bruce Cohen established himself as one of Canada’s top personal finance writers when he was personal finance columnist for the Financial Post. He is a freelance writer for financial companies and the author of the bestseller, The Money Adviser.

Brian FitzGerald is a prominent actuary and expert in retirement program design and operation. He recently retired as a principal from one of Canada’s leading pension and benefits consulting firms.

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Table of Contents

Preface.

PART ONE: THE PIECES OF THE PUZZLE.

Chapter 1. How Much, How Long?

Chapter 2. Are You on a Tricycle or a Bicycle?

Chapter 3. Government Benefits:  Cash for Life.

Chapter 4. CPP: Pension Plan or Pyramid Scheme?

Chapter 5. The Tax Shelter Umbrella.

Chapter 6. Employer Plans: Overlooded value.

Chapter 7. Pensio Tension.

Chapter 8. Your Own Plan: RRSPs, RRIFs and Annuities.

Chapter 9. Will It Be STEW for You?

 PART TWO: THE REAL NITTY GRITTY.

Chapter 10. Who Makes the Rules?

Chapter 11. When Can You Join the Plan—and Who Pays How Much?

Chapter 12. What Happens to the Money?

Chapter 13. When Can You Retire?

Chapter 14. What Do You Get in Retirement?

Chapter 15. What If You're Highly Paid?

Chapter 16. What Happens If You Change Jobs?

Chapter 17. LIRAs, LIFs and LRIFs.

Chapter 18. What about Death and Disability?

Chapter 19. What Happens If Your Marriage Ends?

Chapter 20. Can Your Employer Change the Plan?

 Appendix A: Canada's International Benefits Agreements.

Appendix B: Highlights: Minimum Pension Standards.

Appendix C: Who's a Spouse for Pension Purposes?

Appendix D: Retirement-Related Links.

Appendix E: The Actuarial Report: Keeping a DB Plan Healthy.

Glossary.

Index.

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