Contributions and Rates
Employee contributions to the retirement system are mandatory. Your employer has elected to have your contributions made on a pretax basis. This means that the funds are deducted from your pay before taxes are calculated. The result is that your taxable income is reduced which in turn lowers the amount of taxes you have to pay.
The amount of contribution you pay depends on:
- The benefit formula chosen by your employer
- Your nearest age when you became a member of OCERS
Please note: Contributions may not be withdrawn or borrowed against while you are an active member of OCERS.
If you were a member of OCERS on March 7, 1973 and remained in OCERS membership continuously until credited with 30 years of service, contributions will no longer be deducted from your pay. Reciprocal service counts towards the accrual of 30 years of service.
If you are a Safety member and you became a member of OCERS before January 1, 2013, you may still qualify to have your contributions stopped if you have accrued 30 years of continuous OCERS service. Reciprocal service does not count toward this accrual.
Although contributions will not be deducted, any service you earn will count in calculating your benefit.
Please note: additional or alternate contribution rates may have been established in MOU and PSR provisions, and may be required of all active members regardless of how long they have been a member of the retirement system.
PEPRA plans U, V and W are subject to an annual compensation limit for calculating retirement benefits under Section 7522.10 of the California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013 (PEPRA). The compensation limit is adjusted annually, based on the changes to the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers: U.S. City Average.
All other plans are subject to an annual compensation limit for calculating benefits under Section 401(a)(17) of the Internal Revenue Code. If you became a member of OCERS on or after January 1, 1990 this compensation limit applies to you.
In the event a member’s annual earnings reach the maximum amount permitted in that calendar year, OCERS will request that the employer discontinue deducting retirement contributions from that individual member’s pay for the remainder of the calendar year. Deductions for OCERS contributions will resume the following January.
See the current compensation and benefits limits here.
Please see more information on contributions here.
Employer Contributions to the System
Your employer also makes a mandatory contribution each payroll period towards your retirement. The combination of member and employer contributions and investment earnings pays for the benefits you receive from OCERS.