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BenefitsLink > Q&A Columns >

Stop, Look & Listen: Railroad Retirement Benefits Q&A

Answers are provided by Robert S. Kaufman

Coordination with Private Railroad Pension Plans

(Posted November 30, 1999)

Question 35: I have 34 years of railroad service. I'm disabled, and I receive a Disability Annuity from the Railroad Retirement Board. For over 20 years, I served as an officer of the railroad for which I worked. Next year, when I turn 60, I'll be entitled to retirement benefits from that railroad company. Will this have any effect on my Disability Annuity from Railroad Retirement?

Answer: Generally, retirement benefits paid by a railroad do not have any effect on payments under Railroad Retirement except for the Supplemental Annuity.

With more than 30 years of rail service, you will be eligible for a Supplemental Railroad Retirement Annuity at 60. That benefit is comparatively small, with a maximum monthly amount of $43. Because it is financed by a seperate Trust Fund paid for by railroads (but not by employees), that benefit is reduced by the amount of any private railroad pension, and the railroad receives a "credit" against its tax liability.

Assuming your monthly pension will be atleast $43, you will not receive a Supplemental Annuity under Railroad Retirement.

Otherwise there should be no impact on your Railroad Retirement Disability Annuity.

Important notice:

Answers are provided as general guidance on the subjects covered in the question and are not provided as legal advice to the questioner or to readers. Any legal issues should be reviewed by your legal counsel to apply the law to the particular facts of this and similar situations.

The law in this area changes frequently. Answers are believed to be correct as of the posting dates shown. The completeness or accuracy of a particular answer may be affected by changes in the law (statutes, regulations, rulings, court decisions, etc.) that occur after the date on which a particular Q&A is posted.

Copyright 1997-2017 Robert S. Kaufman
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