Pensions & Group RRSP



At McMaster University, a majority of current retirees receive their pensions from one of three defined benefit pension plans. In broad terms, two of the plans (Original Plan and Plan 2000) cover retirees who were paid a salary, and the third (Hourly Plan) covers retirees who were paid on an hourly basis. CIBC Mellon administers these pension payments.

Group RRSP

Starting in 2008, defined benefit plans were replaced by a Group RRSP for new TMG employees, new senior academic/administrative officers, and new eligible unionized employees, including Operations & Maintenance, Hospitality Services, Security Services, Machinists, Operating Engineers, Parking Services, and the McMaster University Academic Librarians’ Association. McMaster has partnered with Desjardins Financial to provide a competitive fee structure and flexible Group RRSP product matching employer contributions on required employee contributions.

More information:

Pension plan governance and representation

MURA has representation on the two committees that oversee our pensions. Both representatives are members of MURA's Pensions and Benefits Committee and non-voting members of MURA Council.

  • The Hourly Plan
    • Governance:  overseen by a committee of McMaster administration and current hourly-plan employees
    • Representation:  Cliff Andrews is currently the MURA observer on this committee
  • The Salaried Plans

MURA Pensions and Benefits Committee Members 2021/22

The Committee strives to stay informed of changes and areas of concern regarding pensions and benefits so that MURA members can be kept informed. If you have questions or concerns, or If you have any expertise to share with us on pensions and benefits, please email our committee chair.

Pension indexing formula

Hourly Plan

For any current year, the pension increase calculation is based on:

  1. the last 5 years' annual average rate of return (net of investment costs) that exceeds 6.0%, and
  2. the Consumer Price Index (CPI)

The annual increase is whichever of 1) and 2) is the least. The calculations are based on pension fund performance and CPI as of June 30 in the relevant previous years.

Salaried Plan

Same as the hourly plan except that 5-year annual average returns in excess of 4.5% (or 5% for Unifor Unit 1 members hired after May 1, 2010) are available for consideration in the formula. If the amount available from fund returns in the previous 5 years has not been used to give increases in previous years, the formula also allows for a possible "catch up" amount.

Written January 7, 2011
Revised June 3, 2022

© 2021 McMaster University Retirees Association | Having trouble with this site? Contact our Webmaster.

MURA, McMaster University, Gilmour Hall Room B108, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4L8

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software