Transfer of a Federal Registered Pension Plan
to a LIRA
Where employment has been terminated with a federally
regulated employer, the Registered Pension Plan of the
employee can usually be transferred to a locked-in retirement
account (LIRA). The
LIRA is governed by the federal Pension
Benefits Standards Act (PBSA). How the funds are
withdrawn by the employee are covered by the Pension
Benefits Standards Regulations s. 20 and 20.1. The
following rules apply:
can be transferred to a life income fund (LIF) at
once converted to a LIF:
minimum withdrawals are determined by Canada
Revenue Agency (Income Tax Act) rules
maximum withdrawals are determined by PBSA rules -
maximum payment amount table from the website
of the Office of Superintendent of Financial
Institutions (OSFI), on the Life
Income Fund web page.
it is no longer required that an annuity
be purchased at age 80.
90 is reached, 100% of the LIF may be
A LIRA may provide that if a physician certifies that the life of the holder
of the LIRA is expected to be shortened
considerably due to mental or physical disability, the
funds can be withdrawn in a lump sum.
For information on Federal Budget 2008 changes
regarding unlocking of federally-regulated locked-in pension plans, see
the article on unlocking your pension plan.