When you return to work from a leave, you may be able to purchase the time you were off – to add to your OMERS and increase your pension. Your employer will provide you with your options and calculate the cost for you.
Cost and payment
The cost of purchasing a leave period is based on the contributions you and your employer would have been paying during the period.
For some types of leave periods, your cost is single contributions (matched by your employer). For example:
- pregnancy/parental leave
- emergency, family medical, and organ donor leave periods
- reservist leave period of postponement
If you choose not to purchase these types of leaves, the period will still count as OMERS .
For other types of leave periods, your cost is double contributions (your share plus your employer's share). For example:
- authorized leave of absence
- legal strike or lockout
- self-funded leave
If you choose not to purchase these types of leaves, the period will not count as OMERS eligible service.
Your deadline for purchasing a leave period is December 31 of the year following the year in which your leave ended. After the deadline, you can purchase the leave period as a , but the cost calculation is quite different – usually more expensive.
Making the decision
The decision to purchase a leave period is up to you. Weigh the cost of the purchase against how much it will increase your OMERS Plan pension. If you prefer, talk to a professional financial adviser. For an estimate of what your pension will be – with or without purchasing the leave period – please contact OMERS Member Services.
Once you know the cost of buying the leave, you can use the myOMERS Retirement Income Estimator to see how buying the time you were off work will increase your pension. Sign in to myOMERS