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Internal Audit Office

Kansas State University
5 Anderson Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-0118

 

785-532-7308
785-532-0186
internalaudit@k-state.edu

Retirement and Savings Plans

Chapter 4810
Revised July 21, 2014

Table of Contents

.010 Introduction
.020 Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) Mandatory Retirement Plan
.030 Phased Retirement Program
.040 Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS)
.050 Kansas Police and Firemen's Retirement System (KP&F)
.060 Federal Retirement Plans
.070 Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) Voluntary 403(b) Savings Plan
.080 Kansas Deferred Compensation (IRC 457) Plan
.090 Position Changes Impacting Retirement Participation
.100 Retirement Benefits and Procedure
.110 Post Retirement Return to Work
.120 Questions

 

.010 Introduction

Contributions to retirement plans are directed by applicable federal laws including Internal Revenue Code (IRC); Kansas laws, policies, and regulations; Kansas Board of Regents policies; and, in some cases, personal choices.

The mandatory retirement plans at Kansas State University (hereinafter “the University”) are

            Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) Mandatory Retirement Plan (the “Mandatory Plan”),

            Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS),

            Kansas Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (KP&F), and

            Federal retirement plans (Research and Extension grandfathered employees only).

The voluntary retirement plans at the University are

            KBOR Voluntary Pre-Tax and After-Tax 403(b) (the “Voluntary Plan”),

            State of Kansas Deferred Compensation (IRC 457) Plan, and

            Federal Thrift Savings Plan (Research and Extension grandfathered employees only).

Specific criteria for participation as well as relevant statutes, regulations, and policies are discussed within each plan. In those instances where benefits eligibility is required, unclassified employees must have a regular, probationary, tenured, or term contract appointed at least .5 FTE and university support staff must be in a non-temporary position requiring at least 1000 hours per year.

With exception of the federal retirement plans, retirement plans at the University are administered by the Benefits unit in Human Resources.

.020 Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR)  Mandatory Retirement Plan

The KBOR Mandatory Retirement Plan (“Plan”) is a defined contribution IRC 403(b) retirement plan. Contributions are made by payroll deduction on a pre-tax basis and are taxed when distributed, except that distributions may be exempt from State of Kansas income tax in accordance with the Kansas Tax Notices listed below.

This policy is governed by Kansas Statues, regulations, and policies:

            K.S.A. 74-4925 through 74-4927a

            K.S.A. 76-746

            K.A.R. 88-12-1 through 88-12-8

            Kansas Tax Notice 05-05

            KBOR Mandatory Retirement Plan Document

            KBOR Polices and Procedure Manual

A.        Eligibility

Faculty and other unclassified employees participate in the KBOR mandatory retirement plan immediately upon meeting one of the eligibility criteria:

1)                  following one year of benefits-eligible service at a Kansas Regents institution;

2)                  upon employment with membership in KPERS or KP&F; or

3)                  upon documentation of participation in a mandatory retirement plan at an institution of higher education within the U.S. for 365 consecutive days within the past five years, provided that the Documentation of Service (PER-33 form) is submitted to Human Resources within 90 days of hire.

Newly hired faculty or other unclassified employees who meet any of the criteria for waiving the one-year waiting period should contact Human Resources concerning the waiver.

B.        Participation

An eligible employee contributes 5.5% of gross salary to the selected approved provider and the University contributes an amount equal to 8.5% of the employee’s gross salary as required by Kansas statute. Contributions are invested as the employee directs from among the investment options provided under the Plan.

Contributions are pre-tax through payroll deduction under an agreement for salary reduction (PER-13 form), which is completed and submitted to Human Resources. Any employee who does not select a provider and/or investment options prior to the end of the pay period in which eligibility is confirmed will have the contributions invested in the default fund designated by KBOR which is currently the TIAA-CREF age-specific Lifecycle fund.

When an employee participating in the Plan is called to active military duty and is then on military leave without pay, contributions to the Plan are suspended. Upon the employee’s return to payroll, the employee will be given the option to pay the employee portion of retirement contributions which would have been made if the employee had been in pay status rather than on unpaid military leave. If the employee chooses to pay the employee contributions, the employing department will pay the employer contributions.

C.        Providers

Approved providers are Voya (formerly known as ING) and TIAA-CREF. Investment options available through each provider are monitored and approved by the KBOR in its fiduciary capacity.

Once an employee is participating in the Plan, the employee may change between these two providers no more than once per calendar year. When an employee changes providers, existing funds may remain with the previous provider or be transferred to the new provider, subject to the limitations of the investment option(s) in which the funds are invested.

D.        Access to KBOR Mandatory Retirement Funds

An active employee cannot access mandatory retirement funds. Fund access is dependent upon termination of all employment with KBOR institutions and the KBOR office except as described in Section .030C Phased Retirement Program. Movement from a benefits-eligible position to a non-benefits-eligible position (i.e., less than 0.5 FTE, GTA/GRA/GA, or student employment, et al) does not allow access to retirement funds.

After terminating all KBOR employment, the former employee may

  • leave the funds with the retirement provider;
  • transfer the funds to another retirement plan account;
  • withdraw the funds through a lump sum or systematic withdrawals; or
  • use a combination of these options over time.

To initiate a withdrawal or transfer of funds after termination, the participant must complete the withdrawal or transfer form provided by the retirement provider holding the retirement funds. Plan authorization for the withdrawal or transfer is generated by PlanWithEase.com. The participant must log into www.PlanWithEase.com, generate the approval certificate, and submit the certificate with the other form to the retirement provider holding the funds. Participants unable to generate the approval certificate should contact Human Resources (785-532-6277 or benefits@k-state.edu).    

The KBOR mandatory retirement plan does not include a loan provision.

E.        Special Distributions

Participants in the KBOR plan who have a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) that will impact any of their retirement plan assets are obligated to inform PlanWithEase.com as well as the retirement plan provider.

F.         KBOR Mandatory Retirement Plan Benefits

There is no mandatory retirement age. For purposes of eligibility for certain statutory retirement benefits, retirement may be no earlier than the 55th birthday. Employees who retire between ages of 55-59 must have ten years of service in a benefits-eligible position at a KBOR institution or with the KBOR office. There is no minimum service requirement at age 60 or older. The retiree works directly with the retirement plan provider to explore retirement income distribution options.

.030 Phased Retirement Program

Phased retirement is a program through which the University and employee agree to a reduction in the employee’s work time and duties with a proportional reduction in employee compensation but without reduction in employee benefits. The reduction must be less than full-time but no less than .25 FTE. The employee must retire at the end of the phased retirement agreement but may end the agreement earlier by mutual consent. Participating in phased retirement is a privilege, not a right, for the employee and carries substantial costs to the University.

A.        Eligibility for Phased Retirement

Any faculty or other unclassified employee who participates in the KBOR mandatory retirement plan and who is at least 55 years of age and who has completed a minimum of 10 years of full-time service with one or more KBOR institutions (including the KBOR office) may propose a phased retirement agreement for consideration by the University. The University may agree to participation in or terms of an employee’s phased retirement when that participation and terms are in the University’s best interests.

B.        Participation in Phased Retirement

The employee’s phased retirement proposal is reviewed by the department/unit head and/or dean and appropriate institutional officer (i.e., Provost or appropriate Vice President). The average period of phased retirement that may be approved is two to three years but no longer than five years.  Through this process the original proposal may be approved, modified by mutual consent, or denied. Upon approval, the agreement along with a Change or Separation Form (PER-39) and supporting documents are submitted to Human Resources by the participant’s department/unit.

Once the phased retirement agreement is approved and begins, the participant’s appointment is reduced with an equivalent reduction in responsibilities and salary. Benefits (i.e., health insurance, death and disability coverage, employer’s retirement contributions, and leave accruals) remain at the rates equivalent to those prior to the employee’s entry into phased retirement, adjusted for any pay increases received. The employee’s retirement contributions are based on the actual salary received, not the salary prior to entry in the phased retirement agreement.

Specific information concerning the phased retirement timeline and process for the phased retirement proposal is available through the Office of Academic Personnel.

C.        Access to KBOR Mandatory Funds during Phased Retirement

During phased retirement, the participant may access up to 99% of the mandatory retirement funds as allowed by the Plan and the options in which the funds are invested.

.040     Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS)

KPERS is a defined benefit IRC 401(a) retirement plan. Options and structure of KPERS benefits vary based on membership date.

This policy is governed by the following Kansas Statues:

            K.S.A. 74-4901

            K.S.A. 74-4917

            K.S.A. 74-4988

           Kansas Tax Notice 07-05

A.        KPERS Eligibility

Employees participate in KPERS through meeting these criteria:

  • Employment in a university support staff position not covered by KBOR or federal retirement plans (excluding Social Security) OR have opted to participate in KPERS when qualifying to choose between KPERS and KBOR retirement plans;
  • Employment in a regular or limited term position but not a temporary, intermittent, emergency, or student employment position;
  • Employment in a position defined at 0.5 FTE or greater with the expectation for 1,000 or more hours of work per year; and
  • Employment covered by Social Security.

B.        KPERS Participation

An employee hired into a KPERS-covered position will become a KPERS member and participate through mandatory payroll deduction on the first day of employment. KPERS defines membership benefits according to tiers with assignment to KPERS 1 or KPERS 2 based on membership date and subsequent dates of covered employment:

KPERS 1

  • Members who were hired before July 1, 2009, with no break in service thereafter
  • Vested KPERS 1 members who have returned to KPERS-covered employment

KPERS 2

  • Members who were hired on or after July 1, 2009
  • KPERS members who had withdrawn their contributions and then returned to KPERS-covered employment on or after July 1, 2009
  • KPERS members who were not vested and not employed in KPERS-covered employment on July 1, 2009, but who returned to KPERS-covered employment on or after July 1, 2009

In 2014 KPERS 1 members contribute 5% of gross salary; this rate increases to 6% in 2015. KPERS 2 members contribute 6% of gross salary. Employer contribution rates vary as established by the KPERS Board.

While contributing to KPERS, an employee builds KPERS service credit, a key component for determining retirement eligibility and calculating retirement benefits.

When an employee is called to active duty and is then on military leave without pay, contributions to KPERS are suspended. Upon the employee’s return to payroll following the military leave, the employee must submit a DD-214 to Human Resources so that time spent on active duty may be credited KPERS service.

When an employee receives Workers’ Compensation benefits, and is no longer receiving at least 50% pay from the university, the member is considered no longer eligible for KPERS contributions and service credit until he or she returns to work.

C.        KPERS Vesting

KPERS members are vested with five years of service credit. Vesting means being entitled to a retirement benefit when the retirement criteria are met as long as the employee’s contributions remain in the KPERS system.

D.        KPERS Service Credit Purchases

A KPERS member can “buy back” limited military service credit for military service that preceded the employee’s current KPERS service.

A KPERS member may also buy service credit for the year of service (one-year waiting period for KPERS 1 members), forfeited service (when previous KPERS or KP&F contributions were withdrawn), or other specified types of service. For more information on buybacks, contact Human Resources.

D.        KPERS Retirement Benefits

Retirement benefits are calculated through a formula which uses a multiplier, final average salary, and years of KPERS service. To estimate retirement benefits, a KPERS member may access the KPERS benefit calculator.

While the same formula is used for both KPERS 1 and KPERS 2 members, the retirement criteria and benefit components vary.

1.         KPERS 1 Retirement

To retire with full benefits, a KPERS 1 member must be

  • Age 65 with at least one year of KPERS service credit
  • Age 62 with at least ten years of KPERS service credit
  • Any age when age and years of KPERS service credit added together equal at least 85 (“85 points”)

Early retirement with a reduced retirement benefit is possible at or after age 55 with at least 10 years of KPERS service credit. The early retirement penalty is calculated according to the number of months between the member’s retirement date and the member’s 62nd birthday.

For any member whose KPERS membership date is before July 1, 1993, or who was hired into a KPERS-covered position before July 1, 1993, the final average salary is either:

  • An average of the member’s four highest years of salary, including payouts for sick leave, vacation leave, and comp time; or
  • An average of the member’s three highest years of salary, excluding any leave or comp time payments.

KPERS will use the calculation that provides the higher member benefit. If the salary increases substantially from year to year, a 15% cap on compensation may be used to calculate the final average salary.

Any member who was hired into a KPERS-covered position on or after July 1, 1993, and has a KPERS membership date after July 1, 1993, will receive retirement benefits using a final average salary of the three (3) highest years of salary without any leave or compensatory time payouts.

For specific benefit calculations, any KPERS member may access account information, including the retirement calculator, at KPERS.org.

2.         KPERS 2 Retirement

To retire with full benefits, a KPERS 2 member must be

  • Age 65 with at least five years of KPERS service credit
  • Age 60 with at least 30 years of KPERS service credit

Early (reduced) retirement is possible at or after age 55 with at least ten years of KPERS service credit. A member who retires before age 60 but with at least 30 years of service credit will incur less reduction to the retirement benefit than would be charged with fewer years of service credit.

The final average salary for a KPERS 2 member uses the member’s five highest years of salary without payouts for any leave or compensatory time. If salary history shows an increase exceeding 7.5% from year to year, KPERS may cap the compensation used in the final average salary calculation. This generally occurs when the salary changes but the position does not.

For specific benefit questions, a KPERS 2 member may access account information, including the retirement calculator, at KPERS.org.

E.        Special Distributions

When a participant has a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO), KPERS retirement benefits will be divided as directed in the QDRO. Questions concerning the processing of a QDRO or retirement benefits subject to a QDRO must be directed to KPERS at 888.275.5737.

.050     Kansas Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (KP&F)

KP&F is a defined benefit IRC 401(a) retirement plan which covers police officers at K-State.

A.        KP&F Eligibility

Employees become eligible to participate in KP&F on the first day of employment in KP&F-covered positions.

B.        KP&F Participation

The participation/contribution rate for KP&F members is 7.15% of gross salary.

While contributing to KP&F, a KP&F member builds service credit, a key component for determining retirement eligibility and calculating retirement benefits.

KP&F members (Tier II) are vested after fifteen years of KP&F service credit. Vesting means being entitled to a retirement benefit when the retirement criteria are met as long as the KP&F contributions remain in the system. (Note: All KP&F members at the University are Tier II members so this chapter will address only those situations relevant to KP&F Tier II members.)

C.        KP&F Retirement Benefits

Retirement benefits are calculated through a formula which uses a multiplier, final average salary, and years of KP&F service (up to 32 years). To project retirement benefits, a KP&F member may access the KPERS benefit calculator.

To retire with full benefits a KP&F member must be

  • Age 50 with at least 25 years of KP&F service credit
  • Age 55 with at least 20 years of KP&F service credit
  • Age 60 with at least 15 years of KP&F service credit

Early retirement with a reduced benefit is possible at or after age 50 with at least 20 years of KP&F service credit. The earlier the retirement, the greater the reduction in retirement benefits.

For any member whose KP&F membership date is before July 1, 1993, the final average salary is the average of the three highest of the last five years of service, including payouts for sick and annual leave as well as compensatory time.

For any member whose KP&F membership date is on or after July 1, 1993, the final average salary is the average of the three highest of the last five years of service, excluding payouts for leave or compensatory time.

D.        Special Distributions

When a participant has a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, KP&F retirement benefits will be divided as directed in the QDRO. Questions concerning the processing of a QDRO or retirement benefits subject to a QDRO must be directed to KPERS at 888.275.5737.  

.060 Federal Retirement Plans

A.        Social Security

Nearly all University employees contribute to Social Security at the rate set by federal law. Employees exempt from these contributions include most student employees, employees who participate in the Federal Civil Service Retirement System, and certain non-resident employees with F-1 or J-1 visas.

Questions on Social Security benefits should be directed to the Social Security Administration.

Questions on participation in Social Security at the University should be directed to the Payroll and Employee Data section of Human Resources.

B.        Federal Retirement Plans (grandfathered)

Extension agents, specialists and administrators who were employed at least 0.5 time at K-State Research and Extension prior to July 1, 1986, except those covered by the Kansas Board of Regents mandatory retirement plan, are covered by either the Federal Civil Service Retirement System or the Federal Employees Retirement System.

Questions on these retirement plans should be directed to Extension Operations, K-State Research and Extension.

.070 Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) Voluntary 403(b) Savings Plan

The Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) has established an IRC 403(b) voluntary retirement savings plan (the “Voluntary Plan”). Through this plan, pre-tax and/or after-tax employee contributions are made through payroll deduction to qualifying accounts. The University does not contribute to this plan.

A.        Eligibility for Voluntary Plan

Immediately upon employment, any employee in a benefits-eligible position at Kansas State University is eligible to contribute to a voluntary 403(b) retirement savings account as long as that person has not already made the maximum annual contribution to this plan either at the University or through contributions with any other employer. The employee is responsible for confirming contributions with any employer other than the University.

B.        Participation in Voluntary Plan

The maximum amount of voluntary contributions to this plan cannot exceed the applicable limit for the calendar year. This amount is established under IRC Section 402(g)(1)(B), increased by any approved cost of living adjustments.

Special catch-up contribution limits may also be available to participants, based on the employee’s age and years of service at Kansas Board of Regents institutions as well as the employee’s lifetime-to-date retirement savings amounts at KBOR institutions. Human Resources will determine the maximum contribution for each interested employee.

Contributions are made through payroll deduction on a pre-tax or after-tax basis or may be made as a combination of pre- and after-tax amounts. The minimum contribution is $10 per pay period or a percentage of gross pay, not less than one percent, which would produce a minimum of $10 per pay period. An eligible employee may start, change, or stop contributions at any time.

Contributions continue during an employee’s sabbatical leave at the pre-sabbatical rate specified unless the employee gives direction to change the contribution amount or terminate the contribution. No contributions are made when the employee is on leave without pay.

C.        Voluntary Plan Providers

A listing of approved vendors is available through the KBOR website. Pre-tax contributions may be directed into only one account at a time. After-tax contributions may be directed into only one account at a time. Employees who choose to make both pre- and after-tax contributions may direct those contributions to one account or to a pre-tax account with one approved provider and an after-tax account with a different approved provider.

Once an employee is participating in the Plan, the employee may select another provider from the approved list no more often than once per calendar year. When an employee changes providers, existing funds may remain with the previous provider or be transferred to the new provider, subject to the limitations of the investment option(s) in which the funds are invested.

D.        Access to Voluntary Plan Funds

Fund access is dependent upon termination of all employment with KBOR institutions and the KBOR office, upon the participant’s reaching 59½ years of age, or upon the participant’s being approved for long-term disability benefits.

Upon meeting one of these criteria, the participant may

  • leave the funds with the retirement provider;
  • transfer the funds to another retirement plan account;
  • withdraw the funds through a lump sum or systematic withdrawals, subject to federal and state taxation laws and regulations; or
  • use a combination of these options over time.

E.        Special Distributions from Voluntary Plan

When allowed by the provider, a loan may be taken from voluntary 403(b) funds if the employee has not defaulted on any previous 403(b) loan. The loan amount is limited to one-half of the account balance or $50,000, whichever amount is lower. To initiate the loan process, the participant must complete the loan application form provided by the retirement provider holding the retirement funds. Plan authorization for the loan is generated by PlanWithEase.com. The participant must log into www.PlanWithEase.com, generate the approval certificate, and submit the certificate with the loan application to the retirement provider holding the funds. Participants unable to generate the loan approval certificate should contact Human Resources (785-532-6277 or benefits@k-state.edu).  

Voluntary pre-tax 403(b) funds may be available for hardship withdrawal for defined reasons:

  • Tax-deductible medical expenses incurred by participant, participant’s spouse or dependent(s)
  • Purchase or construction of principal residence (excluding mortgage payments)
  • Payment of college tuition, related educational fees, and room and board expenses for participant or participant’s spouse, children, or dependents
  • Payment to prevent eviction from participant’s principal residence or foreclosure on the mortgage of participant’s principal residence
  • Payments for burial or funeral expenses for participant’s deceased spouse, children or dependents
  • Tax-deductible casualty expenses for repair of damage to participant’s principal residence

To request hardship withdrawal, the participant must complete the application form provided by the retirement provider holding the retirement funds. Plan authorization for the hardship withdrawal is generated by PlanWithEase.com. The participant must log into www.PlanWithEase.com, generate the approval certificate, and submit the certificate with the hardship withdrawal application to the retirement provider holding the funds. Participants unable to generate the certificate should contact Human Resources (785-532-6277 or benefits@k-state.edu). When a hardship withdrawal is approved, the participant’s contribution to the voluntary 403(b) must be stopped for six months.

Participants in the KBOR Savings plan who have a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) that will impact any of their retirement plan assets are obligated to inform PlanWithEase.com as well as the voluntary savings plan provider.

This policy is governed by regulations:

            K.A.R. 88-10-1 through 88-10-12

            K.A.R. 88-11-1 through 88-11-12

.080 Kansas Deferred Compensation (IRC 457) Plan

The Tandem Kansas Public Employees Deferred Compensation Plan is an IRC Section 457 voluntary retirement savings plan, utilizing employee pre-tax contributions. The University does not contribute to this plan.

A.        Eligibility for Deferred Compensation Plan

Immediately upon employment, participation in the deferred compensation plan is available to all University employees – university support staff, unclassified, and student – without regard for appointment type or length, the number of hours worked per pay period, or benefits eligibility. The employee is responsible for confirming the contribution total made through any employer other than the University.

B.        Participation in Deferred Compensation Plan

The maximum amount of voluntary contributions to this plan may not exceed the applicable Internal Revenue Code limit for the calendar year. Special catch-up contribution limits may also be available to participants based on the employee’s age and proximity to regular retirement. The Tandem 457 provider and/or Human Resources will determine the maximum contribution for each interested employee.

Contributions are made through payroll deduction on a pre-tax basis. The minimum contribution is $12 per pay period or a comparable percentage of gross pay. An eligible employee may start, change, or stop contributions at any time.

C.        Access to Deferred Compensation Funds

Fund access is dependent upon meeting qualifying criteria which include age or defined hardship criteria. Also, a loan may be taken from a participant’s deferred compensation account with repayment made through payroll deduction. Further detail is available from the Tandem 457 provider.

After terminating all KBOR employment, the former employee may

  • leave the funds with the provider;
  • transfer the funds to another retirement plan account;
  • withdraw the funds through a lump sum or systematic withdrawals; or
  • use a combination of these options over time.

.090 Position Changes Impacting Retirement Participation

A.        KBOR to KPERS

An employee currently participating in the Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) mandatory retirement plan who transfers or is reclassified to a KPERS-covered position will be given a one-time option to remain in the Board of Regents plan or elect to participate in KPERS. The selection must be documented on the KPERS-3BOR form “Retirement Plan Election for Kansas Board of Regents Employees” and returned to Human Resources. Failure to complete the election form will result in the irrevocable assignment to KPERS participation.

B.        KPERS to KBOR

An employee currently participating in KPERS who transfers or is reclassified to a Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR)-covered position will be given a one-time option to remain in KPERS or elect to participate in the KBOR mandatory retirement plan. The selection must be documented on the KPERS-3BOR form “Retirement Plan Election for Kansas Board of Regents Employees” and returned to Human Resources. Failure to complete the election form will result in the irrevocable assignment to KBOR mandatory retirement participation.

C.        Federal to Regents

A University employee participating in the federal CSRS or FERS retirement plan who moves to a position covered by the KBOR mandatory retirement plan will participate in the Plan immediately subject to the Section 4810.110 limitations.

D.        KPERS to KP&F or KP&F to KPERS

Any KPERS or KP&F member transferring to a position covered by the other KPERS-administered retirement plan will participate immediately in the retirement plan covering the new position.

.100 Retirement Benefits and Procedure

Successful retirement planning will convert potentially complex decisions into a manageable process. Human Resources staff members provide information and confidential counsel throughout the retirement planning process. Employees must also notify their department/unit head of their impending retirement either by letter or through the completion of the “Notification of Retirement” form, PER-37.

A.        Group Health Insurance

A retiree may continue to participate in the State Employee Health Plan if that option is exercised prior to or at the time of retirement. Health insurance coverage provided by the University terminates on the last day of the month in which retirement occurs. Continuing the coverage requires that the retiree pay the full cost for coverage elected.

After an employee retires, Human Resources will have no access to the retiree’s insurance records. Retiree coverage is administered through the State Employee Health Plan.

B.        Vacation Leave Payout

A retiring employee will be paid for accumulated vacation leave at the time of retirement to a maximum of 240 hours at the employee’s regular hourly rate of pay. This payment is included in the employee’s final University paycheck and is funded centrally.

C.        Sick Leave Payout

Payment for part of an employee’s sick leave balance will be paid at retirement only when these conditions are met:

Years of Service

Minimum Sick Leave Balance

(in hours)

Hours Paid

8 or more

800

240

15 or more

1000

360

25 or more

1200

480

The payout is calculated using the employee’s hourly wage rate at the time of retirement and included in the retiree’s final paycheck from the University and is funded centrally.

D.        Compensatory Time Payout

Accumulated overtime and holiday compensatory time are paid at retirement.

E.        Life Insurance

Any life insurance plans in place when an employee retires may be continued according to the coverage limitations of the applicable policy. Additional information is available at Benefits webpage for life insurance.

F.         Limited Health Care Bridge (Faculty & Unclassified Staff Only)

The Limited Health Care Bridge provides a mechanism through which the University may contribute to the cost of health insurance to assist unclassified employees wanting to retire before qualifying for Medicare coverage.

1.         Eligibility for Limited Health Care Bridge

Faculty and unclassified staff who are eligible for retirement with a minimum of ten years of full-time service and who are at least 55 years old will be eligible to propose retirement with limited health care bridge participation. Participants in the Phased Retirement Program or any other State of Kansas or University retirement incentive program are not eligible to participate in the Limited Retirement Health Care Bridge Program.

Participation in the Limited Retirement Health Care Bridge Program is a privilege, not a right, and is voluntary for both the employee and the University.   This program is used only when in the best interest of the University and the employee. This decision will be made on a case-by-case basis taking the employee’s appointment or job responsibilities, the timing of the request and other pertinent factors into consideration.

2.         Participation in Limited Health Care Bridge

An employee who wants to participate in the Limited Health Care Bridge Program must submit a written request to retire and to participate in this program to the employee’s department/unit head or academic dean. The forms and procedures are managed by the Office of Academic Personnel.

The program provides for payment of both the employee and employer medical and dental insurance premiums for a negotiable length of time up to the date the employee becomes eligible for Medicare, but no longer than three years. The premiums will be based on the coverage level (Employee Only, Employee and Spouse, etc.) enrolled in by the employee at the time of retirement and will be paid by the University directly to the State Employee Health Plan Retiree/Direct Bill program.

When a request is approved by the university President or the President’s designee, the Office of General Counsel will prepare an agreement between the University and the retiring employee. In no event shall the benefit amount be based solely on the age of the participant such that it would be a violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.

G.        Other Benefits at Retirement

Retirees are eligible to retain their KSU Wildcat ID card and to use all services which require the card such as the libraries. Contact the ID Center for more information. Other benefits (i.e., reduced rates for campus events, parking pass, access to recreation facilities, etc.) may be available to retirees. Questions concerning such retirement benefits should be directed to the office administering the service.

.110 Post-Retirement Return to Work

IRS rulings and case law confirm that access to retirement funds requires a bona fide separation from service. Consequently, rehiring a retiree must be in the best interest of the University and within the bounds of this policy. The retiree may not be rehired into the same position with job duties and job title identical to those which he/she held before retirement. Any rehire is subject to the normal university recruitment approval process. In addition, Human Resources must approve the initial rehire of all retirees prior to allowing the retiree to work in order to document compliance with the following policies.

A.        Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) Mandatory Retirement Plan Participants

A retiree who participated in the KBOR mandatory retirement plan may be rehired no earlier than 60 calendar days after the retirement date. Access to retirement funds will be dependent upon prevailing KBOR and retirement provider policy. See the Kansas Board of Regents Bona fide Separation from Service directive.

B.        KPERS and KP&F

By KPERS policy, a KPERS or KP&F retiree cannot return to work in a university support staff position until the first day of the calendar month following 60 days after the retirement date.

When the post-retirement rehire is into a university support staff position, the KPERS/KP&F retiree will be subject to the earnings, work hours, and other limits imposed by KPERS.

When the post-retirement rehire is into an unclassified position, no earnings or work hours limits will apply, subject to KPERS and university policy.

Any classified employee who accepted the 2011 Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program agreed to not being re-employed by the State of Kansas for a minimum of five years after retirement. This five-year rehire exclusion supersedes the KPERS 60-day rehire exclusion.

C.        Federal Retirement Plan Participants

Employees retired from the Cooperative Extension Service (CES) under either the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) retirement plan may be re-employed no earlier than 60 days after the retirement date.

.120 Questions

Questions concerning this Retirement Plans and Policies chapter should be directed to the Benefits unit in Human Resources at 785-532-6277 or benefits@k-state.edu.