This Guide Memo describes the retirement income plans, health care coverage, and other perquisites available to employees who retire from the University.
This policy applies to all faculty, academic staff, and regular employees as defined in Administrative Guide Memo 2.2.1: Definitions. For policies that apply to employees covered by collective bargaining agreements, refer to the applicable agreements between Stanford University and SEIU Higher Education Workers Local 2007 and Stanford University and the Stanford Deputy Sheriffs' Association. Agreements can be found at Labor Relations & Collective Bargaining.
a. University Retirement Plans
Income from University retirement plans is available to all participants who are vested in these plans, whether or not they are Official University Retirees. For detailed information about eligibility, contributions, vesting, and benefits please see each plan's Summary Plan Description, available at the Benefits web site. The Summary Plan Description is the official University communication on these plans and contains a description of how each plan operates and participants' rights under the plan and federal law.
b. Voluntary Tax-Deferred Annuity Plan (TDA)
This retirement plan is available to all eligible employees immediately upon hire and is intended to supplement the retirement benefits from Social Security and either the SRAP or SCRP plans. For purposes of this plan, "employee" includes faculty and staff; post doctoral scholars; and temporary, casual and contingent employees. Employees make tax-deferred contributions to this supplemental plan and direct where to invest their contributions.
c. Social Security Retirement Benefits
The Social Security program provides retirement benefits to individuals who have worked long enough in covered employment to become fully insured. Reduced benefits are payable to retirees starting at age 62 and before Social Security normal retirement age based on year of birth. Increased benefits result from deferring retirement beyond normal retirement age. After the start of benefits, amounts earned from gainful employment in excess of limits set by law may reduce Social Security payments. Employees and employers pay the costs of the Social Security program. Local offices of the Social Security Administration will provide additional information and assistance with applications for benefits.
Only current employees and former employees who have not been terminated for gross misconduct (and informed in writing that they are ineligible for rehire by the University) may qualify to become an Official University Retiree if age and service requirements are met.
1. Employees Hired Before January 1, 1992
Employees with a benefits-eligible hire date before January 1, 1992 can qualify as an Official University Retiree one of two ways:
2. Employees Hired On or After January 1, 1992
Employees with a benefits-eligible hire date on or after January 1, 1992 qualify as an Official University Retiree when all the following requirements are met:
This rule is called "The Rule of 75."
3. Gradual Retirement
A full-time staff member who qualifies for Official Retiree status but wishes to retire gradually by continuing to work part-time may make such arrangements when mutually acceptable to his/her department (including a department to which an employee is redeployed), in any increment of time, but no more than a total of two (2) years. Retirement benefits will continue to accrue on part-time employment when provided for in the applicable retirement plan.
4. Reemployment of Retirees
If a retiree returns to Stanford employment, he or she should call Stanford Benefits at (650) 736-2985 to discuss the effect, if any, on retiree health benefits.
b. Official University Retiree Benefit Program
a. Arrangements for Retirement
(1) An employee is encouraged to attend a retirement meeting at least 2-3 months prior to his/her potential retirement date.
(2) Retirement is a form of voluntary termination of employment. See Guide Memos 2.1.9: Separation from Employment and 2.2.3: University Payroll.
b. Retirement Gifts
Departments may use University funds to purchase a retirement gift for the retiree. However, a gift of more than nominal value may be taxable to the recipient as additional income. For more information see Guide Memo 2.2.10: Gifts and Awards for University Employees.
c. Reemployment of Retirees
When individuals who have retired from the University are reemployed, the provisions of Guide Memo 2.1.2: Recruiting and Hiring of Regular Staff, and Guide Memo 2.2.3: University Payroll, are applicable.
Health Care: Retirees who are recalled to a benefits-eligible position working between 20-40 hours per week become eligible for the same benefits as an active employee and will need to enroll as such. If a recalled retiree fits these requirements, he/she should call Stanford Benefits at (650) 736-2985. When the recalled retiree terminates employment again, call Stanford Benefits at (650) 736-2985 to re-enroll in retiree medical benefits.
d. Recalled Retiree
If a retiree is receiving payments from SRAP, SCRP or TDA, those benefit payments continue if the retiree is recalled to a benefits-eligible position. In addition, the recalled retiree starts accruing additional retirement benefits based on salary.