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									                      VOLUNTARY DEPARTURE PROGRAM (VDP)
                             Questions and Answers

1. Who is eligible for the Voluntary Departure Program (VDP)?

    •    All regular public service employees who are not eligible to retire under ERIP because
         they are not 55 years of age (50 for staff working in a Correctional Centre) or do not have
         sufficient pre-retirement leave into the future to reach their 55th birthday (50th birthday for
         staff working in a Correctional Centre) on March 31, 2002;


    •    Occupy a position that is declared redundant OR create a vacancy for placement of a
         regular employee.


To be eligible, your ministry must approve your application for the VDP.

Each ministry, based on its operational requirements, will determine the availability of this plan.
This may mean that people working in certain parts of a ministry cannot participate in VDP at this

2. When do I have to leave work?

If you are accepted into the VDP, your last day on pay must be no later than March 31, 2002.

3. How does the VDP work?

The VDP provides a lump sum payment of 3 weeks of base pay for every year (1827 hours at
straight time rule) of service seniority, or major part thereof, as a regular employee to a maximum
of 12 months' base pay.

4. How is the VDP calculated if I am a regular part time employee?

By its nature, service seniority for part time employees is already prorated to reflect part time
status. The VDP is based on complete years of service seniority as a regular employee (1827
hours of seniority equals one complete year).

So, whether part time or full time, total service seniority is divided by 1827 to determine the
number of "full" years of completed service. The number of completed years is multiplied by 3
weeks to get the VDP amount. For example, if an employee has been 1/2 time for 10 years, they
would have 5 full years of service seniority and the VDP payment would be 15 weeks base pay
(applicable to a full time employee). If an employee was 1/2 time for 10 years, then moved to full
time for 6 years, they would have 11 full years of service seniority and the VDP amount would be
33 weeks base pay (applicable to a full time employee).

If there is a partial year remaining in addition to full years, it is not considered if it is 1/2 year
(913.5 hours seniority) or less. If the partial year exceeds 913.5 hours, it is counted as an
additional year of completed service.

For exclusions, the same principles apply; the payment is based on current continuous service as
a regular employee.

5. If I am eligible for VDP and I have less than three years seniority, how will the VDP be

Your VDP will be calculated based on 3 weeks base pay (as specified in Question 3 above).

                           Questions and Answers

6. Is the VDP different for excluded managers than for staff who are union members?

The formula for calculating the VDP packages is the same for all staff.

7. Do I have a choice of taking the VDP as cash or time off?

VDP is a cash lump sum payment only.

8. What options are available for payout of the VDP lump sum payment?

The employer cannot take on the role of financial/taxation advisor. However, our current
understanding is that the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA) recognizes severance
payments as retiring allowances, and therefore eligible for transfer to an RRSP as follows:

· transferred directly to an RRSP in accordance with CCRA rules (currently $2,000 for each year
of contributory service pre-1996) (TD2 form required);
· transferred directly to an RRSP in accordance with CCRA statement of accumulated RRSP
contribution room; (TD2 form required);
· transferred to the BC Pension Corporation for the purchase of non-contributory service,
reinstatement, etc (separate TD2 form required);
· paid directly to the employee, subject to statutory withholdings; or
· any combination of the above.

Again, this information is provided for guidance only. Tax laws change and individual
circumstances vary widely. Employees should seek the advice of a reputable financial planner or
financial institution before deciding the manner in which payment should be disbursed.

9. When will my benefits end if I terminate employment?

    •   Group Life coverage will cease at the end of the month your employment is terminated.
        You have the option of converting this group life coverage to an individual policy with our
        carrier Great-West Life Assurance Company without the need to complete a medical
        examination. You have 60 days from the end of the month in which your employment is
        terminated to action this conversion privilege and must contact Great West Life directly.
        The group life policy is No. 6878 GL (4).

        Great-West Life Assurance Company
        Suite 1510 - 1177 West Hastings Street
        Vancouver BC V6E 3Y9
        Phone: 604 331-2444
        Fax: 604 688-9762
        Toll Free: 1 888 292-4111


        Great West-Life Assurance Company
        Suite 200 - 1675 Douglas Street
        Victoria BC V8W 2G5
        Phone: 250 953-1250
        Fax: 250 383-0431

        · BC Medical coverage through the Ministry of Health is paid up to the end of the month
        of termination of your employment. When coverage ends, MSP will automatically
        generate individual coverage for you and your eligible dependents. Inquiries may be
        made by calling MSP at 1-800-663-7100.

                           Questions and Answers

        · Extended Health and Dental coverage cease effective the date your employment is
        terminated. You may obtain individual coverage under these plans through our carrier,
        Pacific Blue Cross, without having the pre-existing clause apply and without a further
        waiting period. Pacific Blue Cross can be contacted at

10. If I participate in the Voluntary Departure Program, will I be disqualified from receiving
EI benefits because I voluntarily left my job?

Employment Insurance (EI) is administered by Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC).
They have provided the following information: employees who agree to leave their employment
under a workforce reduction process, thereby preserving jobs of co-workers, can receive
employment insurance benefits. HRDC has indicated that the provincial governments' ERIP and
VDP programs meet these requirements. However, you should be aware that applications are
adjudicated on an individual basis to confirm that each employee preserved the job of a co-
worker by voluntarily leaving their employment. In addition, you must also meet the other
entitlement conditions outlined in the EI Act and Regulations.

10A. How would the receipt of the lump sum VDP payment affect my EI claim, and how
can I get further information about EI?

HRDC has indicated that if you qualify for EI benefits, the date that your benefits commence
would be delayed by the amount of time equivalent to your lump sum payment. For example, if
you receive a 6 month lump sum, then your EI benefits would be delayed by 6 months. However,
the number of weeks that EI is payable would be extended by the same number of weeks
(assuming that you meet the other entitlement conditions outlined in the EI Act and Regulations).
In other words, the lump sum payment would delay the date that your EI benefits commence, but
would not decrease the number of weeks of EI benefits to which you are entitled.

Please note that you must apply for EI as soon as you finish your employment and have your
“Record of Employment”. However, if you have not received the Record of Employment within
two weeks of cessation of employment, you should go into the HRDC office to file your claim.

The answers to most general questions related to EI, including how and when to apply, can be
found at More information about the effect on EI
benefits of money paid as part of ERIP or VDP is found on that site by clicking on “Earnings
received while on EI” and then scrolling to “Separation Payments”.

If you have more specific questions, you should call HRDC directly at 1-800-206-7218.
11. May I use my existing banked time before taking the departure package?

Yes you can, as long as you are off-pay by March 31, 2002.

12. I am eligible for a salary increase on March 31, 2002, which is a Sunday. I work Monday
through Friday. Will the increase be included in my VDP lump sum payment?

If you normally work Monday through Friday and you are on pay for the designated paid holiday
on Friday, March 29, 2002 (Good Friday), then you are considered to be on pay on March 31,
2002 and the increase will be reflected in your lump sum payment. Since you must be off pay by
end of day March 31, 2002, to qualify for VDP, you will not be paid for Easter Monday (April 1,

                           Questions and Answers

13. What restrictions are there on re-employment in the public service if I participate in

If you are re-employed in the public service (for excluded employees, the public sector) within the
period of time covered by your lump sum VDP payment, you must reimburse the Government of
British Columbia the portion of the payment associated with the period of time remaining. For
example, an employee receiving 24 weeks VDP, if re-employed 16 weeks after resigning would
repay the equivalent of 8 weeks pay. Re-employment includes contracted services.

14. If a person is on a Temporary Appointment to a higher paying position, at what rate is
their payout?

Provided the employee has been temporarily appointed for at least 1 year prior to the employees
last day on pay (not later than March 31, 2002), the lump sum payment would be at the higher
base rate.

15. If I am accepted into the VDP and I leave on or before March 31, 2002, what is my
vacation entitlement for 2002?

You do not earn the full-year vacation entitlement for 2002. You will be entitled to the vacation
time you have earned up to your last day on pay. Any unused leave entitlements will be paid out
after last day on pay.

16. Will the voluntary departure package be offered to employees on leave of absence?

Yes, regular employees on leave may apply for VDP and if approved, their last day as an
employee can be no later than March 31, 2002.


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