Phased-In Retirement Bill a Workable Solution?

The proposed Phased Retirement Liberalization (PRL) Act may be just what the worker ordered should it actually be enacted into law.

This bill is intended to offer phased-in retirement options, enabling companies to keep experienced employees for a longer period of time to help ease the shortage in the labor pool.

In short, the bill allows companies to distribute pension benefits to eligible employees even if those employees are still working for the company. As a result, anyone who wants to retire can do so on a gradual basis instead of going cold turkey.

A survey of 596 companies conducted in 1999 by Watson Wyatt Worldwide found that 70 percent of these companies agreed that a phased-in retirement program would be a sound idea.

The bill is proposed by Congressman Earl Pomeroy, a North Dakota Democrat, and analysts are predicting that the bill will not have a hard time passing through Congress based on the recent passage of legislation that eliminated the Social Security earnings test for beneficiaries age 65 and older.

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