Human Resources : Retirement
As a new college employee engaged in teaching, administration or research, you are allowed to select your retirement plan. (You may also have this choice if you have changed from a classified to a faculty position.) You must choose a retirement plan within 60 days of your employment date. Contributions to the retirement plan are employer paid (paid by the Commonwealth of Virginia).
Your choices are the Virginia Retirement System (VRS), which is a defined benefit plan, and the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP), which is a defined contribution plan.
Your selection of a retirement plan is irrevocable.
If you do not select a retirement plan within 60 days of employment, you will be automatically covered by VRS.
With the ORP selection, employees may begin receiving benefits at termination of employment, regardless of age. The amount of the benefit is determined by contributions, earnings and losses on the account, and the length of time the benefit is to be paid. Participants in the ORP are not eligible for a disability retirement should they become disabled and unable to perform their job responsibilities.
By selecting VRS, employees are eligible for an unreduced benefit with 30 years of service and at least 5 years of service. Retirement at age 55 with 5 years of service or at age 50 with 10 years of service produces an actuarially reduced benefit. Disability retirement may also be an option if they become disabled and unable to perform their job responsibilities.
The retirement date is the first day of a given month. For teaching faculty, the normal retirement date is June 1. It is suggested the retirement application be submitted from 45 – 90 days prior to the planned retirement date.
The above explanation is applicable to classified staff with the exception they are not eligible for the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP).