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Benefit bridging to retirement
The law provides that in the context of restructuring processes, crisis situations, corporate reorganisation, reduction or transformation of work activities, benefits bridging to retirement paid by the employer can be disbursed.
According to the provisions of article 4, paragraphs from 1 to 7-ter, Law no. 92 of 28 June 2012, and subsequent amendments, the benefit bridging to retirement is addressed permanent dependent workers and for redundant managers, taking into account specific requirements.
Start date and duration
The company agreement is effective after validation by INPS, which issues a statement with information on the estimated monthly charge of the annual early retirement program to the employer, for the purpose of stipulating the bank guarantee.
The early retirement benefits are paid from the month following the termination of the employment, regardless of the claim date. Between the date of termination of the employment relationship and the start of the service no continuous payments must have been made.
What am I entitled to?
The early retirement benefits are calculated as the pension on the date of termination of the employment relationship, excluding the related contribution that the employer undertakes to pay for the redundancy period.
Payment is disbursed for 13 monthly payments and paid out, similar to all pensions paid by the INPS, in advance monthly instalments.
The benefits fall under ordinary taxation.
The management of the early retirement benefits were illustrated in INPS Circulars no. 119 of 1 August 2013, (benefits for workers enrolled in private pension schemes), no. 63 of 11 July 2014 (benefits for workers enrolled in the Civil Servants' Pension Scheme) and no. 90 of 6 December 2014 (benefits for workers enrolled in entertainment and sport pension scheme).
Withdrawal of benefit
Payment of the benefits ceases on expiry and automatic retirement is not envisaged. Therefore, the interested party must submit the pension claim in a timely manner.
To access the benefits, permanent dependent workers must qualify for the minimum contribution and personal data requirements for the right to a pension (the closest of early, old age or according to the requirements set forth in paragraph 15-bis, article 24 of Law no. 214 of 22 December 2011), within a maximum of seven years from termination of the employment relationship (article 1, paragraph 160, Law no. 205 of 27 December 2017; message no. 201 of 17 January 2018).
The benefits, paid by the employer, provides for company agreements, in cases of excess of personnel, between employers who employ on average more than 15 dependent workers and trade unions of the most representative workers at company level.
Senior executives made redundant after a staff reduction process that concluded with an agreement signed by a trade union association provided for of a collective labor bargaining agreement for the category are also eligible.
The employer must submit a bank guarantee to guarantee the solvency of the obligations assumed towards the workers and the INPS, which include the payment of the provision for the benefits and for the related contribution, drawn up according to the scheme enclosed to message no. 216 of 20 January 2016.
In case of non-payment of the monthly provision, INPS will notify a payment notice and, if necessary, proceed with the execution of the guarantee.
The employer is released from the obligation to provide the guarantee if the payment of the provision is made as a lump-sum payment, committing to sustain any additional cost of the service following the final settlement.
- verifies the existence of the requisites envisaged for the employer;
- assigns the validation code to the employer;
- issues to the employer covering financial bridging to pension login details for access to the automated benefits management procedures;
- ascertains the existence of the individual prerequisites of the worker;
- validates the company agreement and the annual redundancy plan;
- checks the pension effective date and calculates the amount of the benefit;
- quantifies the cost of the guarantee or the payment of the provision as a lump sum payment;
- communicates the acceptance of the guarantee to the relevant employer covering financial bridging to pension and to the guarantor bank;
- opens a contributory position dedicated to the payment of the related contribution;
- quantifies monthly the cost for each new company and claims the advance provision for the disbursement of the pre-pension paid by the company to workers;
- disburses the benefits to workers on a monthly basis;
- carries out and certifies withholding taxes.
When can I claim?
To claim the service, the employer must first submit to the INPS office where he/she pays the social contributions the claim for access to the automated benefits management procedures (article 4, paragraphs 1 to 7-ter, Law no. 92 of 28 June 2012), completing the SC77 form, which must include the annual early retirements plan, the list of affected workers, and the relevant company agreement.
How can I claim?
Following the communication of acceptance of the guarantee, the employer submits to the relevant INPS office (of residence of the worker or head office, if existing) the benefits claim for each worker.
The claim for voluntary early retirement benefits (pre-pension), signed by the worker and by the legal representative of the company, must be prepared using the AP97 form.