rumor-central-header

Hearing Rumors? Not sure your co-worker has it right?

Rumor Central has the answers! Submit your question or just browse our blog to separate facts from fiction.


Subscribe to Rumor Central

Subscribe to receive a monthly email that includes answers to recent Rumor Central questions.

Log in to myMOSERS. Click on Personal Information, then on Email Options. Check the box next to Rumor Central


  • Understanding your High 36

    Aug 12, 2022, 3:51 PM By MOSERS

    Good morning,

    I understand that a State employee's retirement benefit is based on the highest 36 consecutive months of pay. My question is whether or not there is a time limit on this rule. For example, if an employee's first 36 months of pay averaged $1,000, then the employee downsized to a lesser wage for the remainder of their career, e.g. $500 for 20 years, would the retirement still refer back to the 36 months at $1,000 despite the vast majority of the employee's career averaging $500?

    Yes, your final average pay, for the purpose of calculating your pension benefit, is your highest 36 consecutive months pay, regardless of when that occurs in your pay history. We will look at your entire pay history, as reported by your employer, and find the “high 36”. This can include overtime pay and holiday pay. All 36 months must be consecutive.

    Your base benefit is calculated using a formula, as defined by law, that takes into account the following factors:

    • Final Average Pay (FAP) – The average of your highest 36 consecutive months of pay
    • Multiplier – The multiplier established by the legislature
    • Credited Service – Your years and months of credited service earned, purchased, or transferred, and unused sick leave (if applicable)

      (Base benefit is the amount before any reductions, taxes, or other deductions.)

      Here is an example of how the base benefit formula works for a person whose gross pay is $50,000 per year (for at least 36 months) and who retires under MSEP 2011 with 25 years of service:

       FAP ($4,167) x MSEP 2011 Multiplier (.017) x Credited Service (25) = $1,770.98 monthly base benefit in retirement

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Long-Term Disability Insurance

    Jul 27, 2022, 3:36 PM By MOSERS

    The long term disability insurance listed on the link from the rumor central e-newsletter, is this a disability insurance for retirement, or is it for active employees. I had asked previously if we had short or long term disability available thru the state and I was told that it is not. If for both retired and active employees, is mosers open enrollment the same time as the open enrollment for mshcp? Or how do you go about finding that information. How can I find this information?

    Except for employees of regional universities, active state employees working in a MOSERS benefit-eligible position have long-term disability (LTD) insurance coverage. Employees are automatically enrolled and there is no cost to the employee. This coverage ends when the member is eligible for normal retirement. LTD insurance provides partial income replacement if you are unable to work for an extended period. This benefit also includes a program that may assist in making workplace changes so you can avoid going or staying on LTD. You can find more information in the LTD Handbook or on the Long-Term Disability page.

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Purchasing Service Credit

    Jul 21, 2022, 9:05 AM By MOSERS
    Are you able to purchase years of public service with another public organization to add to your MOSERS pension to qualify for the rule of 90? Thanks, 

    Service credit may be available for purchase or transfer, depending on your situation. Purchasing service may increase your retirement benefit, allow you to retire sooner, or both. Waiting to purchase service may cost you more money, due to interest, in addition to the purchase price. You can view the Purchasing and Transferring Service Guide for MSEP 2011 members on our website to see if you are eligible to purchase or transfer prior service. We strongly encourage you to contact a MOSERS benefit counselor to discuss your individual situation as there are many factors that will determine your eligibility. 

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • MOSERS Investment Portfolio

    Jul 5, 2022, 2:41 PM By MOSERS

    How much of your investments are leveraged with borrowed funds to keep up the ability to meet retirement amount promises?  

    MOSERS has been providing retirement benefits for Missouri’s state employees for more than 60 years. Our mission is to advance the financial security of our members by providing them a secure retirement income. That is why the Board and staff work hard every day to ensure the long-term sustainability of the System.

    MOSERS trust fund assets equal approximately $8.5 billion. In providing retirement benefits, the Board recognizes that the most important determinant of long-term return and risk is the asset allocation decision. The Strategic Target Allocation (below), as set by the Board, is designed to provide the highest probability of meeting or exceeding the Plan’s investment objectives at a controlled level of risk and with an acceptable level of liquidity.

    As you can see, the portfolio is highly diversified across many different asset classes. For every $1.00 of assets that we have, MOSERS has $1.40 of market exposure. This extra exposure is primarily held in the Long US Treasuries and US TIPS portions of the portfolio. Implementing extra exposure in these asset classes works to increase the diversification of the portfolio. 

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Extraordinary Payment

    Jul 5, 2022, 2:13 PM By MOSERS
    What is the extraordinary payment approved by the legislature?

    As part of the Fiscal Year 2023 state operating budget, which began July 1, 2022, the General Assembly and Governor Parson approved an extraordinary payment of $500 million to the Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System (MOSERS). This one-time payment will not be used to reduce future employer contributions to MOSERS but, rather, will be used to strengthen the System and increase the funded status of the System over time. This extraordinary payment is in addition to the $610 million annual employer contribution for Fiscal Year 2023 approved by the General Assembly and Governor Parson. The state of Missouri, as the largest MOSERS-covered employer, has consistently contributed 100% of the required annual employer contribution as recommended by the System’s actuarial professionals and certified by the MOSERS Board of Trustees.

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Receiving a Refund of Employee Contributions

    Jul 5, 2022, 2:06 PM By MOSERS
    I recently had my last day of employment on June 30, 2022 and want to know what the next steps are to cash out my contributions. 

    Members of MSEP 2011 or the Judicial Plan 2011 who leave state employment may choose to either request a refund (if they don’t anticipate returning to state employment) or leave their contributions with MOSERS (if they do anticipate returning to state employment).

    If you decide to request a refund of your employee contributions, please be aware that there is a 90-day waiting period from the date of termination before MOSERS can issue a refund. You must complete the Member Request for Refund of Employee Contributions form, get it notarized, and submit it to MOSERS.

    Please note that, if you take a refund, you will forfeit all your credited service. Alternatively, you may leave your contributions with the System if you think you might return to work for the state at some point in the future and would like for those years of service to count toward an eventual retirement benefit. To learn more, please visit our Refund of Employee Contributions page. 

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Recent Appropriation Bills

    Jun 30, 2022, 3:38 PM By MOSERS

    following up on this rumor: https://www.mosers.org/rumor-central/rumor-central/2022/03/07/supplemental-budget-bill

    Did the version of the bill submitted to the governor include the $25 matching incentive? I'm reading through the text of the bill and it's difficult to tell.

    The General Assembly passed the FY23 appropriation bills on May 6, 2022. This included $34 million to fund a deferred compensation employer match of up to $75 per month (with a minimum contribution of $25 per month). If signed by the Governor, this incentive will go into effect July 1, 2022. To stay up to date on recent legislation, check out our Legislation page. 

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • COLA Cap

    Jun 22, 2022, 9:10 AM By MOSERS

    Is there a "cap" on the amount of COLA increases retirees receive each year, given the economy warrants it?

    The maximum increase for the COLA in a single year is 5%.

    COLAs for most retirees are equal to 80% of the percentage increase in the average Consumer Price Index (CPI) from one year to the next, with a maximum of 5% (minimum of 0%). 

    You may have read information about another type of COLA Cap: Members employed before August 28, 1997, who retired under MSEP, have a COLA cap. Retirees in this situation, get a guaranteed COLA of at least 4% each year (maximum 5%) until they reach the COLA cap. They reach the COLA cap when the sum of their COLAs equals 65% of their initial benefit amount.

    Example:

    $1,000 (Initial Base Benefit) x .65 (65%) = $ 650 (COLA Cap) 

    • After reaching the COLA cap, annual COLAs will be equal to 80% of the percentage increase in the average Consumer Price Index (CPI) from one year to the next. The minimum is 0% and the maximum is 5%. In other words, retirees eligible for the guaranteed 4% COLA continue receiving a COLA after reaching the COLA cap, however, it isn’t guaranteed at any rate.
    • Typically, members reach the COLA cap around 12 to 13 years after retirement.
    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Purchasing Military Service

    Jun 22, 2022, 9:08 AM By MOSERS
    Is purchasing military service still an option? I can't seem to find that information on the website. Thank you

    As a member of MSEP or MSEP 2000, you may purchase up to four years of active-duty military service credit for service performed prior to last becoming a member of MOSERS. This may include active-duty military training. This information is included in our Purchasing and Transferring Service Guide for MSEP (Closed Plan) Members or Purchasing and Transferring Service Guide for MSEP 2000 Members materials. Purchase of prior military service is not available to members of MSEP 2011 or the Judicial Plan 2011.

    Contact a MOSERS benefit counselor to get additional information and to request an Application to Purchase Active-Duty Military Service. Once you complete the application, MOSERS will provide you with an estimate of the cost to purchase service and how doing so will affect future benefit payment amounts.

    You must complete any purchase of military service prior to applying for retirement. If you have money in your MO Deferred Comp account, as a member of MSEP or MSEP 2000, you can use those funds to purchase prior military service (exception: Roth 457 assets cannot be used to purchase service credit). If you have questions about accessing your funds, contact MO Deferred Comp.

    Print Friendly and PDF
  • Returning to Work

    Jun 22, 2022, 8:59 AM By MOSERS

    Hello. Quick question. I am a current state retiree, and am starting to work part time with a state agency. I know that I'm limited to 1,000 hours in a calendar year. However, is there a weekly or monthly maximum of hours? I have never heard that there was, but I may be working quite a few hours for short periods of time, and I wanted to make sure there would be no issues. Thanks!

    Before receiving a benefit payment from MOSERS, IRS rules require a “bona fide termination” of your employment. Upon meeting the termination and reemployment rules, you may return to work and continue receiving your monthly pension payment, as long as your position is not a MOSERS or MoDOT and Patrol Employees’ Retirement System (MPERS) benefit-eligible position.

    Generally speaking, an employee must work in a position normally requiring at least 1,040 hours per year to qualify for MOSERS benefits. It is the responsibility of the employer, not MOSERS, to determine if a position is eligible for MOSERS benefits. Therefore, your new employer would make the decision regarding your question about a maximum amount of weekly or monthly hours. Once your employer has notified you if it is a benefit-eligible position or not, we encourage you to contact a MOSERS benefit counselor to discuss your specific situation.

    Print Friendly and PDF

Topics

Archive

Disclaimer

We strive to provide the most accurate information possible in our answers to Rumor Central questions. However, occasionally, laws, policies or provisions change and individual circumstances may vary. Please contact a MOSERS benefit counselor or see the handbooks in our website Library for more detailed information. If there is any difference between the information provided in this blog or on the MOSERS website and the law or policies that govern MOSERS, the law and policies will prevail. See our Privacy, Security & Legal Notices for more information.