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  • 2019 COLA Announcement

    Oct 2, 2018, 2:34 PM By MOSERS

    Will there be raise for retirees for 2019? When will it be decided and how much?

    Yes, if you are referring to the annual cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs), assuming there is an increase in Consumer Price Index. We will calculate the 2019 COLA in January 2019. The rate calculation is based on 80% of the percentage increase in the average Consumer Price Index from one year to the next. The maximum increase is 5% (minimum 0%). We will get the data we need to make the calculation in mid-January 2019.

    As a retired general state employee, you will receive a COLA each year on the anniversary of your retirement date, unless one of these exceptions applies to you:

    • Retirees who converted from MSEP to MSEP 2000 during the conversion window in 2000 have COLAs payable each year in July.
    • Retirees who elected a BackDROP will have COLAs payable each year on the anniversary of their BackDROP date.
    • MSEP 2011 members hired after January 1, 2018 who leave state employment prior to retirement eligibility, will receive their first COLA on the second anniversary of their retirement.

    Watch our website in January for more information. Learn more on the COLA page and in the upcoming issue of RetireeNews coming in December.

    We will send you a notice, either in the mail or in your MOSERS Document Express online mailbox, during the month when you get your COLA.

    Note: If you are a legislator or statewide elected official who retired under MSEP 2000 or MSEP 2011, you do not automatically get COLAs. Your benefit will be adjusted only if there is an increase in pay or active members of the general assembly or statewide elected officials, respectively.

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  • State Employee Pay Raise?

    Sep 21, 2018, 1:53 PM By MOSERS

    I heard that the pay increase for 2019 for state employees will not be given to state employees on their check, put is being used for their insurance premiums. If that is true does not seem fair as some employees do not carry state insurance... so do they get a raise?

    We administer retirement, life insurance, and long-term disability benefits but are not involved in employee pay or medical insurance decisions so we do not know the answer to your question. Your agency’s human resources staff may be able to provide you with more information.

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  • BackDROP & Reemployment With the State

    Sep 19, 2018, 11:01 AM By MOSERS

    If I retire with Backdrop, how long do I have to wait if I want to start back working in a state-paid position?

    If you retire and return to work in a benefit-eligible* position, your monthly retirement payment will stop as soon as we are notified that you are re-employed. Once you have worked for at least 12 continuous months in your new benefit-eligible position, you will begin accruing a separate retirement benefit.

    Once you re-retire, your previous benefit will restart and your new benefit (based on your new service and salary) will be calculated and your benefit payments (old benefit plus new benefit) will resume. You are not allowed to elect BackDROP after you have first retired. In other words, you will not be eligible for BackDROP if you return to state employment after having already retired from the state.

    If you retire and return to work in any position not covered by MOSERS or MPERS (including work for the state in a non-benefit-eligible position), you may continue receiving your MOSERS pension benefits and earn as much as you wish. Such employment will have no effect on your MOSERS benefit.

    *A benefit-eligible position is one that normally require at least 1,040 hours of work per year, is permanent in nature, and is covered by MOSERS or the MoDOT and Patrol Employees’ Retirement System (MPERS). Your employer, not MOSERS, determines if you are working in a benefit-eligible position.

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  • University of Missouri

    Sep 19, 2018, 10:54 AM By MOSERS

    With MU in discussions to buy St. Mary's Hospital, will benefited employees (Part-time and full-time) who are retired from the state of Missouri and receiving their retirement benefit have to stop that benefit when they become MU employees and fall under that plan? 

    No. MOSERS and the University of Missouri are separate retirement systems. A MOSERS retiree could take a part-time or full-time position with an MU employer and continue receiving their benefits since such employment would not be in a MOSERS or MPERS benefit-eligible position.

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  • Employer Contributions to Social Security

    Sep 11, 2018, 12:03 PM By MOSERS

    Does my employer contribute to my social security while I am a state employee?

    Yes. As a state employee, you and your employer both pay into Social Security while you are working. For questions about deductions from your paycheck, contact your employer’s human resources department. For questions about Social Security benefits, visit the Social Security Administration’s website at www.ssa.gov or call them toll-free at (800) 772-1213.

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  • University Members

    Aug 29, 2018, 8:06 AM By MOSERS

    I work at a university. The president of the University recently said that MOSER's is trying to kick university employees out of the system. What will happen to our pensions if we are kicked out?

    We are not pursuing any efforts to remove university members from MOSERS. Ultimately, if there were any proposed changes to any retirement plan provisions for our members, they would have to go through the legislative process, be passed by the Missouri General Assembly, and be signed into law by the Governor. The 2019 legislative session begins January 9, 2019 and ends on May 17, 2019. You can track all proposed legislation relating to MOSERS on our Legislation page or on the Joint Committee on Public Employee Retirement website.

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  • BackDROP & Returning to Work

    Aug 28, 2018, 1:13 PM By MOSERS

    What would happen if I retire and draw backdrop and later decide to return to work for the State in a benefit eligible position? I know my retirement benefit would stop but what would happen with the backdrop?

    If you retire and return to work in a benefit-eligible* position, your monthly retirement payment will stop as soon as we are notified that you are re-employed. However, any BackDROP money you received is yours to keep – there is nothing that requires you to return any of it to MOSERS if you return to work. Once you have worked for at least 12 continuous months in your new benefit-eligible position, you will begin accruing a separate retirement benefit. Once you re-retire, your previous benefit will restart and your new benefit (based on your new service and salary) will be calculated and your benefit payments (old benefit plus new benefit) will resume. You are not allowed to elect BackDROP after you have first retired. In other words, you will not be eligible for BackDROP if you return to state employment after having already retired from the state.

    If you retire and return to work in any position not covered by MOSERS or MPERS (including work for the state in a non-benefit-eligible position), you may continue receiving your MOSERS pension benefits and earn as much as you wish. Such employment will have no effect on your MOSERS benefit.

    *A benefit-eligible position is one that normally require at least 1,040 hours of work per year, is permanent in nature, and is covered by MOSERS or the MoDOT and Patrol Employees’ Retirement System (MPERS). Your employer, not MOSERS, determines if you are working in a benefit-eligible position.

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  • MSEP 2011 Vesting

    Aug 23, 2018, 10:11 AM By MOSERS

    I was hired on June 30th 2014 and I was told I was vested at 10 years of service. Due to this change am I now vested at 5 years instead of 10?

    Yes, if you continue working until you have five years of service, you will be vested. At the time you were hired in 2014, vesting for members of the MSEP 2011 (those first employed in a MOSERS benefit-eligible position on or after January 1, 2011) was ten years. Last year, the Governor signed legislation which changed the vesting requirement to five years, effective January 1, 2018. MSEP 2011 members must be actively employed on or after 1/1/2018 to be covered by this change. The changes were summarized on our Legislation page. Keep in mind, the longer you work, the more credited service you will have and the higher your pension benefit will be.

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  • BackDROP & Survivor Benefit?

    Aug 21, 2018, 3:31 PM By MOSERS

    If I have completed my five year backdrop period and continue working in my state position, would my spouse receive the backdrop lump sum payment if I died while still working?

    For example, if I completed the five year backdrop period on 8-1-2018, continued working, planned on retiring on 6-1-2019, but died on 3-1-2019 - would my spouse receive the lump sum back drop as well as the monthly survivor pension benefit, or would she just receive the monthly survivor pension benefit?

    If you pass away before your retirement date, any elections you made about retirement are null and void, including any elections about BackDROP. If you were still working and had not yet reached your retirement date, you are considered an “active member” and we must pay your eligible survivor. Your spouse’s monthly survivor benefit would be based on the Joint & 100% benefit payment option and calculated using your final average pay and credited service as of your date of death. Your spouse would not receive the BackDROP lump-sum payment if you died prior to your retirement date. In calculating your spouse’s monthly benefit, we would count the time in what would have been your BackDROP period – your total years and months of creditable service. For more information regarding survivor benefits, please visit the death of a member section of our website.

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  • Increasing Contributions?

    Aug 20, 2018, 3:46 PM By MOSERS

    Is it possible to contribute more to your pension, to lower your retirement date and still receive a full pension?

    No. The only potential way to move your retirement eligibility date closer is to purchase or transfer qualifying prior public service that you may have and combine it with your MOSERS pension. See our Purchasing and Transferring Service Credit brochure (MSEP 2011) for more information or contact a MOSERS benefit counselor to see if you qualify and if it would be beneficial for you to do so.

    In order for any prior public service to qualify, it must have been full-time, nonfederal, public (government) employment that you performed in Missouri. Examples include prior employment with a public school, city, or county in Missouri, or employment covered by the MoDOT & Patrol Employees Retirement System (MPERS). This could potentially make you eligible for retirement sooner if the extra service resulted in you hitting the Rule of 90 prior to age 67. (The Rule of 90 is available only to those still actively employed by the state.)

    You may also want to keep in mind that you are not required to keep working for the state until retirement age in order to get your pension. Once you are vested with MOSERS, even if you leave state employment, you will be eligible for a lifetime monthly benefit once you also meet the age and all other legal requirements and retire under a MOSERS defined benefit pension plan. Your benefit is calculated using the formula:

    Final Average Pay x Credited Service x Multiplier = Monthly Base Benefit.

    Remember, it is this formula, NOT employee contributions (made by those first employed on or after 1/1/2011), that determines your monthly retirement benefit. The longer you work, the more your benefit will be.

    You certainly can contribute more to MO Deferred Comp to increase your supplemental savings for retirement but it won’t make you eligible for retirement any sooner.

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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.