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After you retire, you may return to TFFR covered employment under certain employment limitations. The limits apply to TFFR covered employment which includes teaching, supervisory, and administrative services except for extra-curricular duties and professional development. The limits do not apply to:
Non contracted substitute teaching does not apply to the annual hour limit. However, in-staff substitute teaching performed during an existing contracted period will apply to the annual hour limit.
To help you determine which return to work option best suits your needs, you should consider the following questions:
Please also keep in mind that under both federal and state law, a teacher must terminate employment in order to be eligible to retire and receive retirement benefits. Therefore, at the time of retirement, there can be no written pre-existing agreement indicating re-employment after retirement. After the applicable waiting period (if any), should you decide to return to work, both you and your employer must complete a “TFFR Retired Member Employment Notification” form within 30 days of your employment. This form must be completed each year you return to teach.
Failure to notify TFFR that you have returned to TFFR covered employment will result in the loss of annuity benefits.
Because of the impact returning to work could have on your TFFR retirement benefits, we strongly encourage you to contact our office to discuss all of your options.
General Rule - Annual Hour Limit
After 30 days from your retirement date, you may return to TFFR covered employment for a maximum number of hours in a fiscal year (July 1 - June 30). You will continue to receive retirement benefits; employer contributions will be paid on all retirement salary paid to the retiree including in-staff subbing, extra curricular and professional development pay; and your TFFR benefit amount will not be affected. Effective 7/1/12, employee contributions will also be required based on the employer payment model. The additional contributions will be included in the retiree's account value but the monthly benefit will not be affected. The annual hour limit is based on the length of employment.
9-month contract = 700 hours
Example: Jane retires July 1, 2011, and begins TFFR retirement benefits. On August 1, she signs a 9-month contract with a ND school district to work for 600 hours which allows her 100 hours for in-staff subbing. With the exception of extra-curricular duty and professional development, all compensated hours count toward the 700-hour limit. Jane and her employer complete a TFFR Retired Member Employment Notification form. Jane receives salary and employer contributions are paid to TFFR on the teaching salary as well as any in-staff subbing, extra-curricular or professional development pay. Jane continues to receive her retirement benefit while teaching part time.
Exception A - Critical Shortage Area
You may return to TFFR covered employment in an approved critical shortage area and exceed the annual hour limitation without losing your retirement benefits. If you retired on or prior to January 1, 2001, no waiting period is required. However, if your retirement date is after January 1, 2001, a one-year waiting period is required. You may perform non-contracted substitute teaching during the one-year waiting period. Critical shortage areas will be determined each year by the Education Standards and Practices Board (ESPB). Each year, you must re-apply for this exception. Like the General Rule, you will continue to receive retirement benefits, employer contributions will be paid on all retirement salary, and your TFFR benefit will not be affected. Effective 7-1-12, Employee contributions will also be required based on the employer payment model. The additional contributions will be included in the retiree's account value but the monthly benefit will not be affected.
Example: John retires July 1, 2010 and begins TFFR retirement benefits. He does substitute teaching in 2010-11, then returns as a full time teacher on July 1, 2011, in an approved critical shortage area. John and his employer complete a TFFR Retired Member Employment Notification form. John receives salary and employer contributions are paid to TFFR on all retirement salary. John continues to receive his retirement benefit while working full time in a critical shortage area.
Exception B - Benefit Suspension and Recalculation
After 30 days from your retirement date, you may return to TFFR covered employment and exceed the annual hour limitation. Under this option, employer contributions will be paid on all retirement salary before and after the benefit suspension. Effective 7-1-12, employer and employee contributions will be paid before and after the suspension based on the employer's payment model. Your TFFR benefits will be suspended the first of the month following the month you reach the annual hour limit. For 2011-12, once the benefit is suspended, employee contributions must be paid on any retirement salary earned after the annual hour limit based on your employer’s TFFR payment model. Upon your re-retirement, your benefits may be recalculated. If you re-retire with:
This brochure is a summary of NDCC 15-39.1-19.1 and is not intended to provide total information concerning employment after retirement. More detailed information may be obtained by contacting:
ND Retirement and Investment Office
In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, this document can be provided in alternate formats. Contact the administrative office to request an alternate format.
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