When a worker is entitled to a U.S. Totalization benefit payable for months before
January 1995 and a pension from a Totalization agreement country (i.e., a pension
based on work covered by the social security system of that country), the foreign
pension is considered to be based on U.S. covered work. As a result, entitlement to
a pension (government sponsored or private) from an agreement country will not cause
the WEP to apply in the computation of a U.S. Totalization benefit payable for months
before January 1995.
This policy applies regardless of which agreement country is paying the pension (i.e.,
it does not have to be the country whose coverage was used to establish the number
holder’s (NH’s) entitlement to the U.S. Totalization benefit).
If the NH is insured based on U.S. coverage alone, a pension from an agreement country
is considered a pension based on noncovered work and may trigger the WEP for benefits
payable for months prior to January 1995. For benefits payable after December 1994,
a foreign pension may trigger the WEP only if the NH is insured based on U.S. coverage
alone and the foreign pension is not based on the Totalization agreement with the
United States. (See GN 01701.310 for a discussion of this provision.)