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Would You Delay ER on a Rumor?
Old 05-29-2012, 01:53 PM   #1
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Would You Delay ER on a Rumor?

Would you delay ER on a rumor that a golden handshake was going to be offered even if you didn't know exactly what the package would be or when it would be offered?

The rumors where DH works have been rampant for about a month. DH has worked for this same aerospace company his entire career and when a rumor like this has "leaked out" he said that there has always been "some truth" to it. The situation with the federal budget, debt and deficit, and debt ceiling seem to make the rumors fairly plausible, but executive management (VP level) is denying it.

I left the decision up to DH as to what he wants to do since it is his retirement. He says that he would kick himself if he retired and the company offered a golden handshake shortly thereafter even though he is more than fed up with the corporate rat race.

Would you delay a planned ER for a few months under these circumstances?
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Old 05-29-2012, 01:54 PM   #2
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a few months, maybe (depending on how certain I was)
a few years, no (even if I knew it was certain)

Ask your husband if the rumors are playing on his 'fears' of missing out on something. If he can try to step outside and be completely neutral (for lack of a better word)... does he still believe the rumors?
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Old 05-29-2012, 01:58 PM   #3
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a few months, maybe (depending on how certain I was)
a few years, no (even if I knew it was certain)
+1
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Old 05-29-2012, 02:23 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by EvrClrx311 View Post
a few months, maybe (depending on how certain I was)
a few years, no (even if I knew it was certain)

Ask your husband if the rumors are playing on his 'fears' of missing out on something. If he can try to step outside and be completely neutral (for lack of a better word)... does he still believe the rumors?
+2

30 yrs in aerospace - I guessed both right and wrong on rumors.

heh heh heh - Once in ER, I haven't wasted tooo much time on hindsight.
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Old 05-29-2012, 02:34 PM   #5
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DH does believes the rumors and believes that there will probably be some offer either this year to be effective early next year or in the first half of next year to be effective within the year.

They offered a package to executives (directors and above) in 2010 that was pretty successful. They also offered voluntary layoffs in 2011 that only yielded 58% of the reduction that they were looking for. Couple that with government funding or lack thereof and he thinks it's a pretty good bet.

If DH got a golden handshake it would be icing on the cake, but it would be spread pretty darn thick so it's hard to just ignore the "rumors".
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:23 PM   #6
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Tough decision, but what's the downside of a "wait and see" strategy? If it's just working for a few more months, it might be worth it.

Another thought... I don't know about your hubbie's company, but some companies will grandfather employees who retire after a certain date, but before the early retirement package is officially announced, giving them the same benefits. That date might be the point at which senior management has approved the offer in concept, but HR needs to have some more time to work out the details and communications.
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:26 PM   #7
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a few months, maybe (depending on how certain I was)
a few years, no (even if I knew it was certain)

Ask your husband if the rumors are playing on his 'fears' of missing out on something. If he can try to step outside and be completely neutral (for lack of a better word)... does he still believe the rumors?
+3

I delayed for a year myself, and there wasn't even any sweetener in the rumor mill! For a good chance at some icing, I'd wait a year or less probably - would depend on what I thought the $ extent of it was too.
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:47 PM   #8
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Tough decision, but what's the downside of a "wait and see" strategy? If it's just working for a few more months, it might be worth it.

Another thought... I don't know about your hubbie's company, but some companies will grandfather employees who retire after a certain date, but before the early retirement package is officially announced, giving them the same benefits. That date might be the point at which senior management has approved the offer in concept, but HR needs to have some more time to work out the details and communications.
Hmmm.... that would be nice, but has not happened that I'm aware of in the time that DH has worked for them.
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:56 PM   #9
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I went through a similar situation at my company and the rumors turned out to be true. I agree with MidPack a year is worth the wait if there is a decent package. I would hang in there and put a time line on how long you are willing to wait--you will God willing have the next 30-40 years or more --a year will seem like nothing and you have some extra cash.
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:00 PM   #10
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Tough decision, but what's the downside of a "wait and see" strategy? If it's just working for a few more months, it might be worth it.
The only downside is that he is more than ready to give his career the boot, so "wait and see" is exactly where he's at.
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:17 PM   #11
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The only downside is that he is more than ready to give his career the boot, so "wait and see" is exactly where he's at.
You might want to take a guesstimate at what the package might be, then do a calculation to see how much it would adjust your spending ability.

If it only changes your spending ability by a few thousand/year I wouldn't wait.
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:24 PM   #12
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During the months before I retired, was a strong rumor going around at my agency that a buyout was in the works. I ignored it and retired anyway. I'm glad I did, because apparently it still hasn't happened; there hasn't even been an early out.

I guess I was lucky. Oh, no, maybe that's not correct. I guess it's not that I was lucky, but those who stayed in order to get it were unlucky. Or something.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:04 PM   #13
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You might want to take a guesstimate at what the package might be, then do a calculation to see how much it would adjust your spending ability.

If it only changes your spending ability by a few thousand/year I wouldn't wait.
Best case it would increase his pension by about 20% annually + severance; worst case he'd just get severance. Due to the crappy economy, the government debt, and the fact that normal severance did not do the trick in 2011, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.

As much as he's ready to pull the plug, I think knowing that he can do it at any time is probably key. I know that he won't wait indefinitely, but I think he's probably going to re-evaluate as the rumors intensify or die down, but not for more than a few months.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:12 PM   #14
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Yes, Yes, a thousand times yes. What's a few more months? They often seem to time these staff reductions program to the announcement of the firm's quarterly or fiscal year end results.

He needs to keep his retirement plans to himself, keep his ear to the ground, and seek out any co-workers who may have some 'inside skinny' . Discretion is key. From my perspective, it is the only way to go!
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:36 PM   #15
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For what it's worth, I think it's a decision of who is calling the shots. When you are working, you're dancing to the employer's call, but when you (really) decide to retire, you're in the driver's seat. I chose the latter.
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Old 05-29-2012, 05:43 PM   #16
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Best case it would increase his pension by about 20% annually + severance; worst case he'd just get severance. Due to the crappy economy, the government debt, and the fact that normal severance did not do the trick in 2011, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.
Pension increase of 20 percent forever? Most definitely I'd wait if that possibility existed.
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Old 05-29-2012, 08:12 PM   #17
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I am in the camp of waiting for a while and see if it is offered. It would be the icing on the cake. If I am reading you correctly, I think that your DH would be disappointed if he retired and missed out on the golden opportunity a few months later. He would be kicking himself and that is no way to start a happy retirement.
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:19 PM   #18
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I would wait a while and try to get info on whether the dumped are true.

But if he does leave, he should cut off all contact, so that if the is a golden handshake, he doesn't hear about it.
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:36 PM   #19
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If there had been a rumor like this in the few months prior to my ER, it would not have changed things for me. My (former) company would not have offered a part-time employee (and working only 12 hours a week) any kind of golden parachute anyway. It was the awful and sickening commute which was front and center to my leaving, so only (maybe) an announced relocation of the company to a location very close to where I lived might have kept me around (and an announcement like that was surely NOT going to be made). Then, my COBRA was going to expire soon so the idea of having to keep working AND find my own individual (and costly) policy was very unappealing. The closest thing to a nice $$ sendoff was the fast rising company stock price which hit a milestone, enabling me to cash it out for my ER. This was in late 2008 so it took a tumble and did not recover for another year, so I would have to stick around for that long just to break even.
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Old 05-29-2012, 11:07 PM   #20
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A few months - yes. A year - likely no. More than a year - no. Would the answers vary if the amount is substantial? Well, it depends on how hard the job is. If the job is really stressful, then the answers remain the same.
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