Backstretch Pension Signups To Begin With Important Webinar on May 12 at 2pm

The Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association will offer an educational webinar on Tuesday, May 12, to explain procedures necessary to sign up for the Maryland Backstretch Pension Program this year.

The webinar will be held from 2-3 p.m. To register, click here

Virtual sign-ups are necessary this year because of ongoing physical-distancing requirements issued by state government officials because of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Along with online transmission of applications and tax documents such as Form W2, the MTHA is setting up backstretch collection boxes to obtain forms and documents from backstretch workers.

The MTHA urges participation in the webinar so it can better accommodate the needs of the members in the pension program. It is important so a mid-July deadline can be met.

Anyone employed in the care of horses on the backstretch, including trainers, are eligible to participate. However, the employee must have worked a minimum of 1,000 hours during the specified year, and provide documentation to that effect (with a W-2 or 1099 form, or tax return). Benefits become available when the employee reaches the age of 65, or at age 55 with 25 years of service. To learn more about the program including qualifications click here.

The MTHA Board of Directors earlier this year continued to affirm its support for the Backstretch Pension Program when it approved an increase in pension funding to $900,000 from $750,000.

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