The CAAT Pension Plan makes it easy to build a stable, predictable retirement income for life.

Together with your personal savings and government pensions, the CAAT Plan could be a key component of your overall retirement income strategy. While it’s never too early to start saving for retirement, it is important to consider if CAAT Plan membership fits into your budget and career plans. If you choose to join the Plan, you immediately begin building retirement income.

As a part-time (or full-time contract) employee of the Ontario College system, you have the option to join the CAAT Pension Plan at any point during your employment.

Taking some time now to learn about the Plan will help you make your choice.

Choosing whether or not to join the Plan is an important decision, and one that should not be taken lightly. Once you have joined the Plan, you remain a member. While you are employed by a participating employer you cannot opt out and stop contributing.

Video: Road to Retirement


Learn how the pension plan works and whether joining might be right for you.

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You will make tax-deductible contributions on every pay – find out how they are calculated and how much you will contribute.

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Explore your pension options in the Plan.

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Career changes

Discover your options if you leave your job before you can retire.

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Need directions?

Before you make a decision you’ll want to be sure you have considered all the options.

In deciding to join, you should think carefully about your own situation. Different factors will be relevant for each individual and only you can determine the action that is best for you.

Here are some of the things to think about when deciding whether or not to join the Plan. No doubt you will have other, unique factors to take into account as well.


Are contributions affordable for me?

  • You will contribute for as long as you are employed by a participating employer, on every pay. The 2017 contribution rates are 11.2% on earnings up to the YMPE and 14.8% on earnings above the YMPE.
  • Contributions, a percentage of earnings, change as your earnings go up or down.
  • Once you join the Plan, you can’t opt out or stop contributions while employed.
  • If you take on another contract, or work at another participating employer, you remain a member and contribute and build pension benefits on those earnings as well.
  • Pension plan contributions are tax-deductible, which means they reduce your income for tax purposes.

Read more about contributions

Take the Pension Road Test – get an estimate of your contributions, then compare it to your current take-home pay and budget.

Does joining fit in with my career plans?

  • Do you plan to work for your employer for a long time or a short time? When your contract ends at your employer you remain a Plan member for 24 months. If you take a job at a new employer that participates in the CAAT Plan during those 24 months, you will resume contributing to the Plan and you will earn additional benefits.
  • Your benefit is locked-in, which means even if you leave the Plan before retirement, it must be used for retirement income, and cannot be taken as a cash payout.
  • Once you join the Plan, you can’t opt out or stop contributions while employed.
  • If your hours are flexible and your earnings go up or down, you still contribute to the Plan on every pay.
  • Do you work more than one contract or at more than one College? Once you join the Plan you and your employer  make contributions and earn benefits on every contract, on every pay. You will earn more service, which means a larger pension.  You cannot, however, earn more than one year of service per calendar year regardless of the number of hours you work in that year.  
  • Are you likely to become full-time in the future? Full-time employees join the Plan automatically on hire. If you become full-time after joining, your full-time service will build on the service earned while you were part-time.
  • As a part-time employee, you can join the Plan at any time during your employment and your membership is effective from that point forward. Remember, the more service in the Plan, the higher your pension.

Consider your plans to remain an employee in the College system, and the benefit of joining now versus later. Read about the value of joining the Plan.

Read about what happens if you change careers before you are eligible to retire.

How does joining fit my retirement plans?

  • Members earn retirement income while they work and contribute
  • The length of time you contribute to the Plan  before you retire is key to the size of the benefit you earn.
  • The Plan offers flexible retirement options and a pension paid for life.

Take the Pension Road Test to see the pension you could earn if you join the Plan.

Read the Retirement section to learn more about the pension you could earn if you join.


Take some time to explore the benefits and costs of joining the Plan. Our Pension Road Test will help you determine if Plan contributions fit in your budget, and show you the pension you could earn if you join.

Be sure to review the examples of members who may be just like you – outlining the contributions they make, the service they earn in the Plan, and the pension they accrue.

If you still have questions after you’ve been through our website, give us a call. One of our pension specialists can answer your questions and explain the Plan. But remember, the decision to join is up to you.

Only you can decide if joining the CAAT Pension Plan is right for you. Once you’ve reviewed all the information and used the tools, you should be ready to decide if you want to join now and start building your retirement income with the CAAT Plan. You have the option to join at any time during your part-time employment, and begin building a pension from that point forward. The earlier you join, the sooner you start accruing service which is a key component in building your future pension. Once you join, you can’t opt out.