Cha-Ching: The Korea Teachers Pension Plan

Information about Korea Teachers Pension Plan

I’m Not Talking about the National Pension Plan

In Korea, there are two basic pension plans that foreign teachers will be part of. The first is the national pension plan which all hagwon teachers, most public school teachers, and national university teachers would contribute to.

The second is the Korea Teachers Pension Plan, which is what most university teachers in Korea are part of, including myself for the past 8 years, as long as you teach at a private university and not a national one. I’ll be talking about this second type of plan in the remainder of this post.

KTPP Website for the Loss

Since I’m leaving Korea in a few months to return to Canada, I was wondering what my payout would be because it’s mainly what will fund my move as well as see me through the first year or two. The Korea Teachers Pension (KTPP) website is really confusing and it’s mostly written in Konglish, such that is almost impossible to calculate your own lump-sum payout.

Korea Sparkling

 

Foreign Teachers in Korean Universities for the Win

I asked for some information in this Facebook group, Foreign Teacher’s in Korean Universities and struck gold: a number to an English speaker at the Korea Teachers Pension office. The number for the office is: 02-769-4408 and the guy answering the phone speaks strangely good English.

Like for real. He seems like he’s a gyopo or something.

 

Cha-Ching: That’s Some Coin in the Bank

Anyway, he asked for a bit of basic information such as my Alien Registration number and name and then told me the happy news. As of now (7.5 years), my payout would be 28.5 million and after 8.5 years (next year), it will be 32.2 million, after tax.

 

Vitamix: You’re Coming Home Soon!

I may perhaps even get myself that sweet, sweet Vitamix that I’ve had my eyes on for years as a welcome back to Canada present to myself. Plus, I can go into any grocery store and have like a thousand fruit and vegetables to choose from instead of like the 10 that you can buy at even the biggest supermarkets in Korea so I’m gonna for sure kick my green smoothie making into high-gear from the medium gear which is the best I can do in Korea.

 

Pro Tip #1 from Jackie

A tip: although the exact time frame is uncertain (after 5 years, 5 years +1 month, or at 6 years-perhaps phone the office), you get a significant bump in your payouts at that time so if you transfer jobs, it is in your best interests to transfer the plan to your new job instead of taking a lump-sum payout part way through.

 

Like for real, you could lose thousands of dollars. DO NOT take the lump-sum part-way through.

 

Pro Tip #2 from Jackie

I’m always working hard for you, my readers offering you good value for your money, you know? Here’s pro tip #2: while it was possible to transfer your time on the national pension plan to the Korea teachers Pension Plan about 10 years ago, it is not possible now. But, of course check for yourself.

4 Comments

  1. Bernadette

    Good day : )

    Although you write that it’s best to ‘transfer the plan’ if a person changes positions, I wonder if it’s possible to do so at your own choosing or whether it depends on the school you’d be transferring to?

    Thank you!^^

    1. Bernadette

      You write that “there are two basic pension plans that foreign teachers will be part of. The first is the national pension plan which all hagwon teachers, most public school teachers, and national university teachers would contribute to”, so if I’m on the KTPP am I only wise to transfer to other private uni’s or can I somehow keep the plan regardless?

      1. admin

        It’s best to transfer to another private uni to get to that 5-year point. This is especially true if you’re from a country (England? NZ? Not sure?) that doesn’t have a reciprocal pension agreement with Korea for the national plan. People from those countries contribute to the national plan but will never get their money back like Canadians or Americans. I’m not sure what the case is for S. Africans.

    2. admin

      If you’re transferring from a private pension plan to another private pension plan, you can choose a lump-sum or a transfer. But, you get a lot more money later (after 5 years), so transferring is much wiser.

      If you transfer from a private to the national, you can’t transfer it and would have to take the lump-sum.

      If you transfer from the national to the private, you can’t transfer and will get both payouts when you leave Korea.

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