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A Publication for VRS Members
November 2017 | Archives
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myVRS Financial Wellness - Powered by Enrich
 

Increase Your Money Management Skills – Visit myVRS Financial Wellness

Want a free, easy-to-use, entertaining and helpful way to make the most of your finances and plan for retirement? Check out the myVRS Financial Wellness program, powered by Enrich. You’ll find articles, videos and infographics, to help you manage credit, insurance, taxes, student loans and other financial issues.

Starting in December when you log into your myVRS account, you will have access to additional and personalized content, including calculators, educational games, budgeting tools and a library of mini-courses to help you improve the money-management skills that are most important to you.

With myVRS Financial Wellness, personal finance just got personal!

 
How's Your Retirement Planning? Check Your Member Benefit Profile to Find Out

How’s Your Retirement Planning? Check Your Member Benefit Profile to Find Out

Be the MVP in Your Retirement. Review Your 2017 MBP

Keep up with your retirement planning by reviewing your Member Benefit Profile (MBP), available in your myVRS account.

The MBP is your annual benefit statement, providing information on your account balance, when you will be eligible for retirement, and other benefits, such as group life insurance and the health insurance credit.

MBPs are not available for Hybrid Retirement Plan members; however, you can review your account information online in myVRS.

All VRS members have access to the Retirement Planner and Benefit Estimator in myVRS, which allow you to set goals and also create estimates of your future benefits based on different retirement dates or payout options.

Your MBP, combined with your myVRS information, is a valuable tool for planning your future.

 
Protect Your Loved Ones With Optional Life Insurance Coverage
 

Protect Your Loved Ones With Optional Life Insurance Coverage

When it comes to your family, you want to protect them as much as possible. If you are covered under the VRS Group Life Insurance Program, you can purchase additional coverage for yourself, your spouse and dependent children through the Optional Group Life Insurance Program. Optional group life provides benefits for natural and accidental death and for dismemberment. You pay the premiums through payroll deduction.

You can cover yourself for up to four times your compensation, up to $750,000, and your spouse for up to half the maximum amount of your coverage, up to $375,000. Coverage for your dependent children is available for $10,000, $20,000 or $30,000. Find out more about optional life.

 

Hybrid Retirement Plan Member News

Use Voluntary Contributions to Increase Savings

You have until December 15 to get a jump on your future by increasing the amount of your voluntary contributions for the next quarter, effective January 1. By increasing your voluntary contributions, you save more for retirement and receive a match from your employer.

You can increase your voluntary contributions once a quarter. Your employer matches the first 1 percent of your voluntary contributions with a 1 percent contribution and matches each additional 0.5 percent increase with a 0.25 percent contribution, up to 2.5 percent. If you save 4 percent, you’ll receive 2.5 percent in employer matching contributions. See how your contributions and your employer’s contributions work together to increase your savings.

To increase the amount of your voluntary contributions, go to www.varetire.org/hybrid and log into Account Access, or call ICMA-RC Investor Services at 1-877-327-5261 and select option 1.

Try SmartStep for Savings

In addition to the option to change your voluntary contributions quarterly, you can use the new SmartStep option to make automatic increases to your voluntary contribution account once a year.

You choose the amount, from 0.5 to 3.5 percent, and the month your increase will occur: January, April, July or October. Your voluntary contribution increases automatically each year until you reach the maximum of 4 percent. Increasing your contributions annually helps you reach the maximum contribution gradually, and modest savings add up over time. The more you save, the more you receive in matching employer contributions.

To start SmartStep, log into www.varetire.org/hybrid and select Account Access. Then go to the Contributions page to enter an amount for SmartStep. Use the Hybrid Member Paycheck Calculator to see the impact of contributions and other deductions on your paycheck.

 
New Employee? Take a Look at Your VRS Benefits  

New Employee? Take a Look at Your VRS Benefits

Congratulations on your new job! Now, let’s talk about your benefits.

As a VRS member, you are eligible to receive a retirement benefit when you meet the age and service requirements for your plan. You can find the plan provisions for Plan 1, Plan 2 or the Hybrid Retirement Plan on the member section of the VRS Website. You also have other benefits available throughout your career:

Life Insurance

Disability

Savings

  • You can save additional money for retirement through the Commonwealth of Virginia 457 Deferred Compensation Plan, which also may have a cash match. Check to make sure your employer participates in the plan.
  • Your employer may offer a 403(b) plan or another supplemental retirement plan.

To Learn More

  • Access your online member account through myVRS to keep track of your benefits and use online retirement planning tools.
  • Handbooks, brochures, educational sessions and more are available according to your plan on the VRS website. These resources will help you learn more about your benefits and plan for retirement.
  • VRS provides one-on-one counseling by phone or in person for personal benefit information.
  • Subscribe to Member News and check out VRS on Facebook for the latest benefit news.
 

If You Defer Retirement, What Happens to Your Benefits?

You’ve been in your VRS-covered job for five years, but now you’re moving out of state. What do you do with the service and the funds you’ve built up in your VRS member account?

If you leave your VRS-covered position before you are eligible to retire, you have a choice:

  • Take a refund of your member contributions and interest. (Be aware that taking a refund cancels your membership and eligibility for any future benefits.)
  • Leave your funds with VRS and become a deferred member.

If you decide to become a deferred member, here’s what happens to your VRS benefits:

Retirement Benefit

If you are vested in the defined benefit plan (have at least five years of service), you may be eligible for a retirement benefit when you meet the age and service requirements for retirement.

Basic Group Life Insurance and Optional Group Life Insurance

If you are covered under the VRS Group Life Insurance Program, your group life insurance coverage ends within 31 days of when you leave your position. However, you can convert your coverage to an individual policy. If you have optional group life insurance coverage, the optional life coverage ends, but you may also convert this coverage to an individual policy.

Health Insurance

If you are a state employee, your health insurance coverage ends on the last day of the month you leave covered employment. You may extend your health insurance coverage for up to 18 months or convert your coverage to an individual policy. Visit the Department of Human Resource Management for more information. If you are an employee of a school division or a political subdivision, check with your human resource office.

Virginia Sickness and Disability Program and Virginia Local Disability Program

If you are enrolled in the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program (VSDP) or the Virginia Local Disability Program (VLDP), your coverage ends when you leave employment.

Long-Term Care

If you were enrolled in VSDP or VLDP while employed, you had long-term care coverage. This coverage ends when you leave employment. You can continue coverage if you pay the premiums and opt-into the coverage within 60 days.

Health Insurance Credit

If you have at least 15 years of service credit, you may be eligible for the health insurance credit when you retire. The health insurance credit provides you with a reimbursement to help with the cost of your health insurance premiums in retirement.

Deferred Compensation Plan Options

If you participate in the Commonwealth of Virginia 457 Deferred Compensation Plan and leave your position, your contributions stop. You can continue to manage your account, request a distribution or roll over to another plan.

Find out more about leaving employment and deferred membership for Plan 1 and Plan 2 members and for hybrid members.

 

FAQ: How Do I Roll Over Funds Into My 457 Account?

A rollover is a transfer to your 457 Deferred Compensation Plan or the 457 portion of your Hybrid Retirement Plan from another qualified plan that allows you to consolidate your retirement assets. You continue to defer income taxes until you withdraw the money from your 457 account.

Qualified plans:

  • 401(a) plan (hybrid members cannot roll over money from other plans to the hybrid 401(a) plan, but may roll over money to the Hybrid 457 Deferred Compensation Plan)
  • 401(k)
  • 457(b) and 403(b) plans
  • Federal Thrift Savings Plan
  • Traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA)

To roll over funds, use the Incoming Direct Rollover Form, and provide:

  • Your contact information
  • The plan provider for your rollover
  • Type of account
  • Amount
  • Instructions to your current provider on whether you are rolling over all of your funds or a portion

Notify your current provider on how and where to send checks or make wire transfers and mail the completed form to ICMA-RC, the provider for the 457 Plan. Finally, complete the forms required by your current provider to transfer the funds.

 

Member Education Icon  Member Education

Classroom and webinar courses are posted on the VRS website as they are scheduled. Register from our Education and Counseling pages.

Retirement Planning
Copyright © 2017 Virginia Retirement System

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