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Retirement Programs

Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS)

The Teachers’ and State Employees Retirement System is a defined benefit plan. Under this type of plan the benefit you receive at retirement is based on a formula. This formula considers your years and months of creditable service, your age, and your “average final compensation,” which is the average of your salary during your four highest paid consecutive years. Neither the investment experience of the plan assets nor the amount contributed by you and the University, on your behalf, directly determines the amount of the guaranteed benefit you will receive at retirement.

Optional Retirement Program

The University of North Carolina Optional Retirement Program is a defined contribution plan. This program is an option or alternative to the North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS). Under the ORP, you control your investment choices, distribution methods and retirement goals, whereas the State controls the investments under TSERS.

Retiring Medicare Eligible Members

As a reminder for active members nearing retirement, Medicare becomes primary the last month that a retiring active member is covered by his or her agency and the Medicare reduced rate applies. Members should be aware of the Medicare primacy change and the need to elect Medicare Part B to be effective the date of their retirement.

In order for a retiree to be eligible for the new Humana and UnitedHealthcare Group Medicare Advantage Plans under the Retirement Systems, the retiree must be enrolled in Part A and B and they must have enrolled in their retirement benefit more than sixty days in advance of their coverage effective date.

Supplemental Retirement Programs

All University employees are encouraged to supplement their state and federal retirement benefits by participating in one or more of the supplemental retirement savings programs available to them. A significant part of the retirement planning process may include voluntary supplemental retirement plans that offer significant tax advantages. The University makes such plans available to eligible employees as authorized under Sections 403(b)(1), 403(b)(7), 457(b) and 401(k) of the Internal Revenue Code. A supplemental retirement plan allows you to make contributions through payroll deductions to a variety of investment vehicles. The supplemental programs available are:

State Law Enforcement Officers’ Retirement Program

State Law Enforcement Officers’ participate in the Teachers’ and State Employees Retirement System. This program is a defined benefit plan. Under this type of plan the benefit you receive at retirement is based on a formula. This formula considers your years and months of creditable service, your age, and your “average final compensation,” which is the average of your salary during your four highest paid consecutive years. Neither the investment experience of the plan assets nor the amount contributed by you and the University, on your behalf, directly determines the amount of the guaranteed benefit you will receive at retirement. Law Enforcement Officers are entitled to additional benefits, including earlier unreduced retirement benefits, participation in the State 401(k) and additional death benefits.