What Happens to Your Pension When the Company Goes Bust?

Studebaker auto workers found out the hard way in 1963. When the Studebaker Corp. shut down its plant in South Bend, Ind., workers who had been promised pensions saw their hard-earned benefits vanish in an instant. Instead of receiving fixed payments throughout retirement, thousands of employees were forced to take one-time lump sums worth a fraction of what they’d earned. Thousands more received no benefits at all. The Studebaker Corp. had been promising pension benefits to its employees, but in …

Cutting Detroit Retirees’ Pensions Violates State Constitution

Last month, we heard the news about the City of Detroit filing for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection in federal court, becoming the largest city to ever do so.  The city’s financial crisis threatens the retirement security of more than 30,000 active and retired employees, and almost immediately, lawsuits were filed in state court to protect Detroit’s two pension funds during the city’s restructuring. Michigan Attorney General Bill Schulte has said that, under the state constitution, pension obligations to state and …

Today’s Retirees First to Pay More Into Social Security Than They’ll Get Back

For a person retiring in 1960, Social Security presented a pretty great deal: Pay in during your working years and you could expect to get back about seven times more in benefits during retirement. But today’s retirees won’t reap nearly the same return on investment. In fact, they’re part of the first generation of workers who have paid more in Social Security taxes than they will receive in benefits.

The Takeaway: Workers Would Trade Pay for Better Retirement Benefits

Would you trade some of your pay for better retirement and health care benefits? A new survey from HR-consulting firm Towers Watson found more than half of U.S. workers would.

The Takeaway: Public Employees Retiring Too Early?; Health Care’s Mixed-Up Future

Retirement age for public sector workers””government employees, teachers, firefighters, trash collectors””is becoming a topic of fierce friction nationwide. And the lines between hospitals, insurance companies and doctors are blurring, as the health care law awaits Supreme Court consideration and the 2014 start date of the individual insurance mandate.

Sign up for Medicare…Online!

Signing up for Medicare has never been easier. Last week marked the beginning of a new way for older adults to enroll for Medicare — on the internet. Patricia Barry reports: This new kind of application “will make it easier than ever to sign up for Medicare,” said Social Security Commissioner Michael J. Astrue at the program’s launch in Los Angeles. The rollout will be promoted in advertising spots featuring actress Patty Duke and the cast of her 1960s sitcom …