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I'm about to pull the trigger on retirement and am vested in both a 401(k) plan and a defined benefit pension plan. I have to decide whether to take 1) a monthly payment or 2) a lump sum from my company's defined benefit pension plan.

The monthly payment option concerns me due to the possibility of the company defaulting on payments at some point in the future. I might be better off to take the lump sum and manage the money myself.

Can anyone help me with the following questions:
 Is it a common occurance for companies to default on payments to retirees from defined benefit pension plans?
 Are there any recent examples of publicly traded companies that have defaulted on such payments?
 Are defined benefit plans insured by the government? If so, what agency offers coverage?

Thanks for your help!
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