While GE does offer some pension benefits to retirees, the company formally ended the program for new employees starting in 2011, reports Forbes.com. Retirees who are eligible for pension benefits may find those benefits subject to change, as the company has made adjustments to its pension plans in times of financial hardship. The pension plan benefits that are available may include Medicare supplemental health insurance coverage and life insurance benefits, though recent adjustments to these benefits may be significantly less than GE employees expected to receive during their employment tenure.
By cutting into its pension fund budget, GE ended up saving more than $3 billion in a single fiscal quarter, according to TheFiscalTimes.com. The company's pension fund cuts affect different types of employees in different ways. Salaried employees received smaller reductions in pension benefits than hourly earners, for example.
Retirement age also has an impact on benefits received under GE's new scaled-back pension benefits plans for retirees. Retiring earlier at age 60 may reduce the amount and type of benefits retirees are eligible to receive. For example, retirees who stop work at age 60 are not eligible for supplemental Medicare coverage. Former GE employees have reported feeling betrayed and confused by the changes to their pension plans, which they counted on as retirement security during their tenure at the company.