ERS Tier 1 Active Members: Any member of the ERS who had service credit with the ERS or TRS prior to January 1, 2013.
ERS Tier 2 Active Members: Any member of the ERS who had no service credit with the ERS or TRS prior to January 1, 2013.
State Police Tier 1 Active Members: An employee considered State Police hired prior to January 1, 2013.
State Police Tier 2 Active Members: An employee considered State Police who had no service credit with the ERS or TRS prior to January 1, 2013.
Notice regarding Withdrawal of Retirement: If you have submitted your application for retirement and have decided to cancel your retirement, you must submit a signed cancellation request to TRS or ERS prior to your retirement date. The request must be received before your retirement date to be effective. This signed request can be submitted through MOS or by mail.
Partial Lump Sum Option Plan - Effective for those retiring on or after October 1, 2019.
For more information about your ERS retirement benefits, consult your member handbook.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I purchase service credit for my past employment?
Alabama state law allows active members to purchase service credit for certain types of past employment. Purchasing service credit may increase the amount of your retirement income or allow you to retire sooner. To purchase service credit, the member must submit proper certification of the service. Request the appropriate certification form by contacting the ERS or download the form from our website. Have the form completed by an official record keeper where the service was performed, then return the completed certification form to the ERS.
Refer to the ERS Member Handbook, p. 12, for more information on purchasing prior service.
Note for Military Service: During an active member’s first year of participation in the ERS, they may purchase up to four years of eligible military service provided the member has had no previous period of eligibility. The next opportunity to purchase military service will be after accumulating 10 years of creditable service and will cost substantially more.
Can I contribute an additional amount to my ERS account monthly?
No, your contribution is mandatory and the percentage is set by Alabama statute based on your tier status and your classification as to whether you are considered FLC or State Police. You may wish to enroll in the voluntary RSA-1 Deferred Compensation Plan. This plan is completely separate from your retirement account and is an excellent way to set aside additional retirement funds.
When am I eligible to retire?
Tier 1 member: You are eligible to retire at any age with 25 or more years of service credit (30 years for agencies who have not adopted 25-year retirement) or at age 60 (age 52 for State Police) with 10 or more years of service.
Tier 2 member: You are eligible to retire at age 62 (age 56 for State Police or FLC) with 10 or more years of service.
Can I borrow money from my ERS account?
No. The only way to get money out of an ERS account is to terminate employment and withdraw the entire account.
Can I borrow from my retirement or make a hardship withdrawal?
You cannot borrow against your retirement. You can only withdraw your account if you are no longer employed with a member agency. If you do withdraw your account, you forfeit your lifetime retirement benefits and your years and months of service.
When will I receive my refund (withdrawal)?
The time to process a refund varies depending on the receipt of your Notice of Final Deposit and Request for Refund, and when we receive your last retirement contribution. Agencies usually send contributions in the first several days following the close of the month. If you terminate earlier in a month, the RSA may have to wait several weeks for that final contribution. Total processing time can be up to 6 weeks.
Where Can I View My ERS Account Statement?
You may view your account statement online at Member Online Services. Your account statement will no longer be mailed. The Statement of Account verifies current year contributions and accumulated interest. The total service credit, interest, service purchases, previously taxed contributions, non-taxed contributions, and balance are also provided. The member’s designated beneficiary and mailing address as of June 30 are listed.
How long does it take from when I retire to when I receive my first retirement check?
A member can only retire on the first day of any given month. Retirement Benefits are deposited on the last working date on any given month. Example: retirement date January 1, 2023 and receive first benefit deposit on January 30, 2023.
I am the beneficiary of a deceased active member. How do I get the benefits from his/her account?
If the member was still active, the beneficiary should complete the Application for Survivor Benefit form. The form can also be obtained from the member’s payroll office, or the RSA will be glad to mail or email it. Please note that the member’s payroll office has to complete a portion of the form, so the beneficiary may wish to go to the payroll office to get and complete the form.