Leave of absence without pay

Does a leave of absence without pay count as pensionable service?

Yes, a leave of absence without pay counts as pensionable service if it is authorized and contributions are fully paid for that period of leave.

Do I continue to accrue pension benefits during my leave?

Yes, as long as you make contributions for the leave period once you are back at work.

How do I make my contributions to the Plan?

Once you're back to work, you can choose to pay:

  • by payroll deduction over a period roughly equal to twice the period of your absence, or
  • in a lump sum.

The Pension Centre will let you know how much to pay and how you can make the payments.

How much do I have to contribute?

That depends on the length and type of the leave.

If I have strike, lockout, suspension or unauthorized absences, is this time pensionable?


Is there a maximum period of leave I can count as pensionable service?

Yes. Under Income Tax Act rules:

  • up to five years of cumulative leave without pay can be counted as pensionable service (not including leave for illness or disability)
  • up to an additional three years of maternity and/or adoption leave or parental care leave