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Purchase of Strike Time

The 2016-2020 Provincial Collective Agreement was officially signed on April 17, 2019. A detailed document outlining the impact of all of the changes will be available for teachers after the Easter break. However, the following information on the purchase of past strike time for pension purposes, which is time sensitive, is being provided now.


Letter #3 – Pensionable Service During a Legal Work Stoppage

The renewal of this letter in the 2016-2020 Provincial Collective Agreement has created a THREE-MONTH WINDOW FROM April 17, 2019 – July 17, 2019 FOR TEACHERS TO PURCHASE LOST PENSIONABLE SERVICE DUE TO A PAST LEGAL WORK STOPPAGE.

Teachers who were contributing members of the Teachers’ Pension Plan during either or both of the work stoppages in 1982-83 and 1993-94 would have lost one month of pensionable service (0.1 years) in each of these school years, unless arrangements were previously made to purchase the lost pensionable service.

As a result, many teachers who work 30 complete years have 29.8 worked pensionable years and use rounding to retire in June of a year under “30 and out”.

A teacher with 29.5 worked pensionable years can round for retirement purposes at the end of a school year (in June) only. A person with 29.3 or 29.4 worked pensionable years cannot retire in June, but must work an additional six or seven months in the following school year in order to be eligible to retire under “30 and out”. (As well, rounding can occur in the same manner for teachers retiring under 29+1, and 25 and 55, but only in June.) For teachers who are short one or two months and wish to retire as early as possible, this window of opportunity to purchase strike time can be very important.

Purchasing pensionable service will also add 0.2% (0.22% for 1982-83 service) of pension accrual for each month purchased. The cost to purchase pensionable service during a legal work stoppage is twice the normal contribution rates at the salary in effect at the time of the work stoppage, plus interest.

For those teachers who are interested in purchasing this service, the procedure is to email a request to the Teachers’ Pension Plan Corporation (TPPC) at You must provide your SIN and mailing address and ask for a contract to purchase pensionable service lost during a legal work stoppage(s). This must be done within the three-month window ending July 17, 2019. The TPPC will send you a contract in the mail outlining the cost and options for payment

Relatively few teachers have utilized previous windows of opportunity to purchase “strike time” because there is no employer contribution to the cost. However, this window may be very important for those teachers who require one or two months to be able to utilize the rounding option for pension eligibility in June of a school year. Teachers should check their pension statement to determine their pensionable service as of the end of a school year.
To help in considering this option, the following examples, prepared by the TPPC, are designed to provide “ballpark” estimates of the cost of purchasing one month of strike time for pensionable service:

  • A teacher with an annual salary of $32,256.00 in 1993-94 would pay $1,806.38 to purchase the one month of pensionable service.
  • A teacher with an annual salary of $36,657.00 in 1993-94 would pay $2,035.77 to purchase the one month of pensionable service.

(Note: Your annual pensionable salary for each year of service is provided on your pension statement.)

Any questions can be directed to an NLTA Administrative Officer in Programs and Services at the NLTA at 726-3223 or 1-800-563-3599 or