Retirement Home

Retirement Overview

“The question isn’t at what age I want to retire, it’s at what income.” – George Foreman

Two of the biggest building blocks toward your retirement income are your pension and your 401(k). PG&E gives you both plans—and that’s unusual, because most employers today offer only a 401(k) plan.

Other building blocks toward your retirement income include Social Security and any personal savings, investments, and other earnings or income you might have.

WHEN CAN YOU RETIRE?

You can retire as early as age 55. You’ll be considered a PG&E retiree if you end your PG&E employment at age 55 or older—even if you don’t start your pension.

Retirement date Pension start date
Also called Pension Commencement Date

The first day after you end PG&E employment if you’re age 55 or older.

Your retirement date can be any day of the month.

The date from which your pension payments will be calculated.

Your pension start date is always the first of the month.

The earliest possible pension payment will be made in the second month following your pension start date, and will include your first and second months' payment.*

EXAMPLE:
April 19: Last day worked
April 20: Retirement date
May 1: Pension start date
June 1: First pension payment—including the benefit for May and June combined

*Cash balance participants who elect a lump sum will receive a one-time benefit as early as the second month following their pension start date, depending when their correctly completed pension kit is received.

HOW DO YOU START THE RETIREMENT PROCESS?

For an overview of what you need to do to start the retirement process, check out these resources:

For details about PG&E’s pension, retiree medical and postretirement life insurance benefits, download these guides:

WHAT ARE YOUR RETIREMENT BENEFITS?

PG&E’s retirement benefits can help you build financial security.

401(k)
Retirement Savings Plan (RSP)

You’re in control—you decide how much to contribute to your account, and you choose your investment funds.

You can save for retirement through your own before-tax or after-tax contributions plus company matching contributions.

Your 401(k) benefit will vary based on how well your investment funds perform.

Pension
Retirement Plan

You don’t have to do anything—PG&E makes all the contributions.

Your pension is fully paid by PG&E at no cost to you.

Your pension benefit is defined by a formula. This means you’ll receive a specified amount regardless of how well the pension’s investments perform.

For a summary of the steps you need to take to start your pension, download the Pension Quick Start Guide.

Postretirement Life Insurance

PG&E automatically provides this coverage at no cost to you.

You have the option to convert your employee life insurance coverage to an individual policy—at your expense—within 31 days after your retirement date.

Retiree Medical Coverage

You can elect PG&E-sponsored retiree medical coverage for yourself and your eligible dependents if you’re at least age 55 on your last day of employment and you retire with at least 10 years of service or you’re a Management or A&T employee hired before 2004.

You pay for this coverage—and PG&E helps you pay for this coverage through company-paid benefits:

Before you can elect this coverage, you must report your Intent to Retire to the PG&E Benefits Service Center 90 to 31 days before your retirement date (90 days before your retirement date if you or any dependents will be eligible for Medicare by your retirement date).

For a summary of how to elect PG&E-sponsored retiree medical coverage, download the Retiree Medical Quick Start Guide.

Retiree Health Account

You’ll get this tax-free health reimbursement account if you:

  • Are eligible for PG&E-sponsored retiree medical coverage;
  • Are enrolled in the Anthem or Kaiser Health Account Plan (HAP) when you retire; and
  • Have leftover Heath Account credits when you retire.

Capped Sick Time for Management, A&T and ESC employees retiring after January 1, 2017*

You also could have a Retiree Health Account if you’re eligible for PG&E-sponsored retiree medical coverage and you have Capped Sick Time when you retired—even if you're not enrolled in the Health Account Plan (HAP) as an employee. If you have Capped Sick Time when you retire, 25% of your Capped Sick balance—up to a maximum of 25% of 1,040 Capped Sick hours—will be converted as credits and deposited into a Retiree Health Account for you:

If you have Capped Sick Time and you're enrolled in the HAP as an employee:

If you have Capped Sick Time but you're not enrolled in the HAP as an employee:

You'll get unused HAP credits + Capped Sick Time in your Retiree Health Account when you retire. You'll get Capped Sick Time in your Retiree Health Account when you retire.

*IBEW and SEIU-represented employees do not have Capped Sick Time.

To see how a converted Capped Sick Time balance is calculated, download the guide to Converting Your Unused Capped Sick Time Bank to Retiree Health Account Credits.

You can’t elect the Retiree Health Account or contribute to it after you retire.

You can use the credits in your account to help pay for health care premiums and out-of-pocket health expenses—even if you’re not enrolled in a PG&E-sponsored retiree medical plan.

RETIREMENT INCOME BUILDING BLOCKS

Your pension and 401(k) form the foundation of your retirement income.

Retirement building blocks

Guaranteed income

Some of your income is guaranteed—like your Social Security benefits and your pension. There are no cost of living increases for your pension, but your Social Security benefits may be adjusted for cost of living. The only way you can get bigger pension and Social Security benefits is by working longer.

If you have the cash balance pension formula, the income from your pension is stated as a 401(k)-style account balance, even though you’re guaranteed a pension benefit. Fixed annuities and CDs are guaranteed sources of income, too.

Variable income

Other income is variable—like your 401(k) and other investments, such as mutual funds and real estate. The value of your 401(k) account can go up or down, depending on the performance of your investments.

You can influence how big of a balance you have by increasing your contributions and by saving more; by changing your investment mix; and by actively seeking financial guidance from advisors at Fidelity and Edelman Financial Engines.