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BENEFITS


TERMINATING SERVICE

If you leave County service prior to retirement, there are a number of factors to consider. The following explains how terminating service will affect your retirement benefits, depending on your plan, amount of service credit, and age.

TERMINATING SERVICE — GENERAL PLANS A, B, C, D, G and SAFETY PLANS A, B, C

If you are vested (five years or more of County or combined County and reciprocal system service credit):

  • You automatically become a deferred member.
  • Your contributions will remain on deposit and continue to earn interest.
  • Once you meet the minimum age requirements, you become eligible for retirement.
  • No action is required on your part until you decide to apply for retirement.

If you are not vested:

  • Your contributions will remain on deposit and continue to earn interest.
  • You are not eligible for future retirement benefits from LACERA.
  • Your contributions may be withdrawn at any time (unless you return to County service or become employed in a reciprocal retirement system within six months).
  • No action is required on your part until you wish to withdraw your contributions or you reach age 70.5, at which time you must take a lump sum payment of total contributions or begin taking the monthly retirement benefit.

Whether or not you are vested:

  • You may establish reciprocity if you leave your contributions on deposit with LACERA and enter employment with a reciprocal agency within six months.
  • Your contributions will remain on deposit and continue to earn interest.

TERMINATING SERVICE — PLAN E

If you are vested (10 years or more of County or combined County and reciprocal system service credit):

  • You automatically become a deferred member.
  • Once you meet the minimum age requirements, you become eligible for retirement.
  • No action is required on your part until you decide to apply for retirement.

If you are not vested:

  • You are not eligible for future retirement benefits from LACERA.
  • If you have five years or more of Plan E service (but less than 10 years), you may transfer to Plan D and convert the Plan E service to Plan D. You will then be vested in Plan D and become a deferred member. You must contact LACERA and initiate the request to do so prior to your termination date.

Whether or not you are vested:

  • You may establish reciprocity if you enter employment with a reciprocal agency within six months.

Withdrawing Your Contributions; Consider the Consequences

If you are part of a contributory plan, you may withdraw your accumulated contributions from LACERA; however, withdrawing terminates your LACERA membership. If you withdraw your accumulated contributions, you will forfeit any and all rights to future retirement benefits from LACERA, including disability benefits.

If you withdraw, you may elect either:

  • To have LACERA issue a check directly to you (minus 20 percent mandatory federal withholding tax and any applicable California state tax);* or
  • If you are under age 70.5, you may defer taxes on the funds by rolling them over to an IRA or other employer's qualified plan.

Note: If you are over age 70.5, you are not eligible to roll the funds over. LACERA will issue a check to you minus 20 percent mandatory federal withholding tax and any applicable California state tax.*

*Mandatory withholding tax per U.S. Code Title 26. If you reside in California, you may elect not to have state tax withheld; however, if you do not make a state tax withholding election, we will withhold an additional 2 percent in California state income tax (or 2.5 percent If you will reach age 70.5 by the end of the calendar year). If you are under age 59.5, federal and state penalties for early withdrawal may apply.

6/2/16