HTML has links - PDF has Authentication
415-110-700  <<  415-110-710 >>   415-110-720

PDFWAC 415-110-710

What are the return to work rules for SERS Plan 2 and Plan 3?

(1) How soon can I return to work after I retire without impacting my SERS retirement benefit?
(a) You may begin working immediately after you retire without impacting your SERS retirement benefit if:
(i) You go to work for a private employer;
(ii) You are an independent contractor as defined in WAC 415-02-110; or
(iii) Your only employment is as an elected official and you end your SERS membership under RCW 41.35.030 (2)(b).
(b) If you retire and then return to work sooner than thirty consecutive calendar days from your accrual date (effective retirement date), your monthly retirement benefit will be reduced in accordance with RCW 41.35.060(1) until you remain absent for at least thirty consecutive calendar days.
(c) If you retire and remain absent at least thirty consecutive calendar days from your accrual date, you may return to work in any position (eligible or ineligible) for any employer whose retirement plan is administered by the department of retirement systems (DRS) or a public institution of higher education, without impacting your SERS retirement benefit until you reach your applicable hour limit.
Example: Amy's last day at work for the ABC school district is June 19, 2015, and her official retirement date is September 1, 2015, (when she starts getting her monthly benefit). She wants to return to work at the start of the new school year on September 8, 2015. She needs to wait thirty consecutive calendar days from her September 1st retirement date before returning to work. If she returns to work before October 1st, her benefit will be reduced until she meets the required thirty-day break from employment.
(2) What is the annual hour limit? Except as provided in subsection (5) of this section regarding the 2008 early retirement factors (ERFs), after being absent at least thirty consecutive calendar days as described in subsection (1)(c) of this section, your annual hour limit will be based on the position you return to.
(a) No limit. You may work as many hours as you want without affecting your retirement benefit if you work:
(i) In a position that is not eligible for membership in a DRS or higher education retirement plan;
(ii) As an independent contractor;
(iii) For a private employer; or
(iv) If you end your SERS membership as an elected official under RCW 41.35.030 (2)(b).
(b) Eight hundred sixty-seven-hour limit. You may work up to eight hundred sixty-seven hours in a calendar year, in a position which is eligible for membership in a DRS or public institution of higher education retirement plan, before your retirement benefit is suspended.
(3) What hours count toward the limit?
(a) Counted toward the eight hundred sixty-seven hour limit: All compensated hours that are worked in an eligible position covered by a DRS or higher education retirement plan, including the use of earned sick leave, vacation days, paid holidays, compensatory time, and cashouts of compensatory time.
(b) Not counted toward the hour limit: Cashouts of unused sick and vacation leave.
(4) What happens if I work more than the annual eight hundred sixty-seven hour limit?
(a) If you work more than the annual limit, your retirement benefit will be suspended. The suspension will be effective the day after you exceed the hour limit. DRS will prorate your retirement benefit for the month in which you exceed the limit.
(b) Your retirement benefit will be restarted beginning the next calendar year (January) or the day after you terminate all eligible employment, whichever occurs first.
(c) DRS will recover any overpayments made to you for the month(s) in which you exceeded the hour limit and received a retirement benefit. See RCW 41.50.130.
(5) If you retire using the 2008 ERFs and return to work before age sixty-five except as described in subsection (6) of this section:
(a)(i) You will not receive your retirement benefit for any month in which you are an employee in a position covered by a DRS or higher education retirement plan including, but not limited to, permanent, nonpermanent, project, temporary, eligible and ineligible positions.
(ii) You will not receive your retirement benefit for any month in which you earn compensation for service performed as a contractor, or as the result of service performed by those in your employ, for an employer covered by a DRS or higher education retirement plan.
(iii) Your retirement benefit will stop effective the first day of the month you return to work and will restart the first day of the month after you stop working.
(b) Upon reaching age sixty-five you can work under the rules described in subsections (2) and (3) of this section.
(6) As a 2008 ERF retiree, can I work and still receive my retirement benefit?
(a) If you retire using the 2008 ERFs, effective May 8, 2019, you may return to work before age sixty-five in a nonadministrative position at a school district, charter school, educational service district, state school for the deaf, state school for the blind, or tribal school and work up to eight hundred sixty-seven hours in a calendar year. If you work more than eight hundred sixty-seven hours, your benefit will be subject to suspension and restarting as described in subsection (4) of this section.
(b) Upon reaching age sixty-five you can work under the rules described in subsections (2) and (3) of this section.
(7) Can I return to SERS membership?
(a) If you retire from SERS, you have the option to return to membership if you are employed by a SERS employer and meet the eligibility criteria. The option to return to membership is prospective from the first day of the month following the month in which you request to return to membership. See RCW 41.35.030(3).
(b) If you reenter SERS membership and later choose to retire again, DRS will recalculate your retirement benefit under the applicable statutes and regulations. See WAC 415-110-830. You will be subject to the return to work rules in place at the time of your reretirement.
(c) If you are a retiree from another retirement system administered by DRS, you may choose to enter SERS membership if you are eligible. See WAC 415-110-725. The option to enter membership is prospective from the first day of the month following the month in which you request membership. See RCW 41.04.270 and 41.35.030.
(8) What if I retired from SERS and another DRS retirement system?
(a) If you retired from SERS using the 2008 ERFs and another DRS retirement system and are under age sixty-five:
(i) Your SERS retirement benefit will be impacted as described in subsections (5) and (6) of this section.
(ii) The retirement benefit from the other DRS retirement system will be impacted based on the rules for that system.
(b) If you retired from SERS and another DRS retirement system without using the 2008 ERFs, or using the 2008 ERFs and have reached age sixty-five, see WAC 415-113-300 to determine the effect of returning to work.
Note:
You may have a choice of returning to membership. See the following WAC sections for more information: WAC 415-108-725, 415-110-725, 415-112-546, 415-106-725, and 415-104-111.
(9) Terms used.
(a) 2008 Early retirement factors (ERFs) – RCW 41.35.420 (3)(b) for SERS Plan 2, or RCW 41.35.680 for SERS Plan 3.
(b) Accrual date - RCW 41.35.450, 41.35.640.
(c) Elected official - WAC 415-110-550.
(d) Eligible position - RCW 41.35.010; WAC 415-110-680 through 415-110-700.
(e) Ineligible position - RCW 41.35.010.
(f) Member - RCW 41.35.010.
(g) Month - Calendar month as defined in WAC 415-02-030.
(h) Nonadministrative position - WAC 415-02-030.
(i) Public institution of higher education - RCW 28B.10.400.
(j) SERS - School employees' retirement system.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050. WSR 20-01-079, § 415-110-710, filed 12/11/19, effective 1/11/20. Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050(5). WSR 16-17-047, § 415-110-710, filed 8/11/16, effective 9/11/16. Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050(5), 41.40.010(42), 41.40.037. WSR 04-04-037, § 415-110-710, filed 1/29/04, effective 3/1/04. Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050(5), 41.04.270, 41.26.030, 41.32.010, 41.32.025, 41.32.480, 41.32.500, 41.32.570, 41.32.765, 41.32.795, 41.32.802, 41.32.855, 41.32.860, 41.32.862, 41.35.010, 41.35.030, 41.35.060, 41.35.450, 41.35.640, 41.40.010, 41.40.023, 41.40.037, 41.40.150, 41.40.193, 41.40.680, 41.40.750, 41.40.801. WSR 02-02-060, § 415-110-710, filed 12/28/01, effective 1/1/02. Statutory Authority: Chapters 41.32, 41.34, 41.35, 41.50 RCW. WSR 01-01-059, § 415-110-710, filed 12/12/00, effective 1/12/01.]
Site Contents
Selected content listed in alphabetical order under each group