Prohibited Employment

The Pension Trust is intended to provide income to its retired participants and requires that retirees declare their intentions to stop working in the building and construction industry before they begin receiving payment.  If you find after beginning your pension that you need to return to employment prohibited by the Plan, you should be aware that your benefits will likely be suspended. The amount of time benefits are suspended depends on your age and the length of time you are employed. If you take work in Prohibited Employment, you must notify the Administrative Office in writing within 15 days after you start work.

Before reaching age 65, you must withdraw completely and refrain from any employment or activity in the building and construction industry anywhere, including self-employment.  

At or after reaching age 65, until you reach age 70½ , you are permitted to work no more than 40 hours in a calendar month in the same industry, in the same trade or craft, in the geographical areas of the Southwest Plan.

After age 70½, beginning with the April 1 immediately following the calendar year in which you attain 70½, there are no restrictions on the type, duration or location of the work you may perform while receiving Pension payments from the Plan.

The following are common categories of Prohibited Employment:

  • Owner/Management positions for a construction-related business
  • Administrative support positions for a construction-related business
  • Positions that require non-incidental visitation to construction job sites
  • Consultant positions with construction-related businesses
  • Positions that require use of tools and skills used before retirement 

Waiver of Suspension of Benefits for Retired Employees under certain conditions from October 1, 2020 through December 31, 2021.

Retirees receiving a Normal, Vested, Regular or Service Pension may be allowed a waiver of suspension of pension benefits when returning to work if all the following conditions are met:

  • The retiree is not receiving an Early or Disability Pension
  • The retiree is hired by a signatory employer who is remitting contributions to the Southwest Carpenters Pension Trust for bargaining unit employees performing Covered Work.
  • The employer must submit in writing and have been approved in advance to offer specified employment to the specific Retired Employee.
  • The retiree must submit a written application to the Administrative Office to waive suspension of your pension benefit for an approved employer.
  • You may not begin employment until both the Employer and Employee have permission to do so.
  • You may not perform any type of work covered by the Collective Bargaining Agreement that would require the employer to make contributions to the Southwest Carpenters Pension Trust.
  • Your approval to work without suspension of your pension must be reconfirmed in writing in January of each year or the approval will expire on the following February 1st.