Nortel: Ottawa Regulators Help Some Pensioners

The pension regulator in Quebec plans to manage the pension funds of some Nortel Networks retirees in the province for the next five years.

That’s good news for the approximately 3,000 people affected by the decision, but does nothing for thousands more whose money is tied up in Nortel’s bankruptcy process. It also does not help workers who were employed in Ottawa but retired somewhere else.

Nortel pensioners throughout Canada have been begging for government intervention as their former employer parts itself out and makes no promises about its ability to continue paying the money retirees have earned.

Meanwhile, about 7,000 people who worked in Nortel’s Ontario location could receive up to $1,000 per month from a guarantee fund, but most of those ex-workers get about $2,000 per month. Workers in Alberta, though, are essentially out of luck. Nortel maintained a large workforce there, but Alberta – along with several other Canadian provinces – offers no pension protection plans.

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