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Please click on the question below to expand and see the answer.

How much will my buy-ins cost?

There are several options available to purchase additional pension service credit within the State Employees' Pension Plan. Our online benefit calculator for the State Employees' Pension Plan will assist you in estimating the cost of the buy-in that apply to you.

What will my net monthly pension benefit be?

This depends on the amount of federal and state income taxes you elect to have withheld from your pension check as well as any benefit premium deductions that you elect.

How long will my pension last?

For the life of the pensioner or the life of his/her spouse or dependent parent or disabled child if there is an eligible survivor.

Do I need to send in an original Death Certificate?

If it's the death of a pensioner and/or survivor pensioner we would need the original Death Certificate. If it's the death of a spouse and they just need to be removed from the insurance we would just need a copy of the Death Certificate.

What do I do when I become eligible for Medicare?

"The Pension Office needs a copy of the signed Medicare card to change the health insurance to the Medicare supplement, which is Blue Cross Special Medicfill."

How long before a pensioner's contributions are exhausted?

For the purpose of a death benefit, the total pension benefit paid to the pensioner is subtracted from the amount of employee contributions paid into the pension fund by the pensioner prior to his/her retirement. Interest is also applied and any residual contributions are paid to the named beneficiary provided that there are no eligible survivors. For tax purposes, the Internal Revenue Services' Safe Harbor Tax Method is used to determine the taxable percentage of monthly pension benefit. In this case, the after-tax contributions of the employee are used and amortized over the pensioners expected lifetime.

What happens to my health insurance when I turn age 65? What happens when my spouse turns age 65?

You will receive a letter from our office approximately 2 months prior to you or your spouse's 65th birthday requesting a copy of the Medicare card. Upon receipt of this letter, please return a copy of the Medicare card with Parts A and B or the waiver form which is included with the letter from our office. Once we receive a copy of the card, the eligible recipient will be enrolled in a Medicare supplement, BCBS Special Medicfill (Blue Cross Blue Shield).

How do I notify your office of an address change?

You must complete a change of address form or notify our office in writing with your live signature. You may mail the form, fax it to our office at (302)739-6129 or, print and scan the form to email it to the Pension Office.

How do I change my Tax exemptions/allowances?

You must complete a Tax Withholding Election Form from our website or contact our office to have one mailed to you.

When can I make changes to my health or dental insurance?

Unless it is a life changing event (ex: marriage, divorce, new birth, etc) you can not make changes until our Open Enrollment period which is always in May of every year and changes will take effect July 1st. You will receive an Open Enrollment packet usually around the first week of May, if you do not receive one please contact our office immediately.

Who do I contact about my prescription plan with the State?

If the Pensioner or spouse of the Pensioner is having trouble with getting their RX at the drug store they can call the Benefits Section. Any questions about drug information they can call Medco at: 1- 800-939-2142

When will I receive my pension check/check advice?

All pension checks/advices are mailed the day prior to the last working day of the month. If you have direct deposit, your money will be in your account on the last working day of the month even if you have not received your check advice. For this reason, we are encouraging you to sign up for direct deposit if you are not already a participant. Direct deposit of pensions became mandatory as of January 1, 1996.

What should I do if I have not received my pension check?

If you have not received your check within seven (7) business days, please notify the Pension Office. Reissued checks cannot be processed until seven (7) business days from the last day of the month. Again, we are strongly encouraging you to participate in direct deposit, to avoid the above.

EMPLID - What is it and where did it come from?

EMPLID stands for Employee Identification number. The Office of Pensions Comprehensive Retirement Information System (CRIS) uses EMPLID rather than Social Security Number to identify members. The EMPLID provides privacy for the employee. If you do not know your EMPLID number, we are also able to reference your account with your Social Security Number.

Rather than print someone's Social Security Number on a report, we use an EMPLID. The Office of Pensions can locate each member in the system by the EMPLID and unauthorized persons do not have ability to view the member's Social Security Number. Each member of the Delaware Public Employees' Retirement System has their own unique EMPLID, separate from any other system, and retains that number throughout their service and/or retirement. The EMPLID is a system-generated number that is assigned to the member when they are first entered into CRIS.

How much can I earn as a temporary State employee without affecting my pension benefit? I realize that any position I accept must be non-pension creditable in order to be able to continue to receive my pension benefit.

Effective calendar year 2013, retirees from the State Employees' Pension Plan (Plan) who are working in casual/seasonal or substitute position may earn up to $30,000 before receiving a pension benefit offset. If a retiree does exceed the allowable earnings limit, the retiree's pension benefit will be reduced over a 12 month period calculated as $1 for every $2 earned over $30,000. The deduction will begin in July of the year following the calendar year for which the earnings are reported.
Learn more here.

How long do I have to wait after retiring before I can return to work? I realize that only certain non-pension creditable positions will allow me to continue to receive my pension benefit if I return to work.

Retirees under the age of 65 must have a six month bona fide separation before returning to work with an employer participating in the State Employees’ Pension Plan.

For retirees over the age of 65, there is not a required separation period.

Keep in mind that under or over the age of 65, you may not have a pre-arrangement with a participating employer. This means that you cannot be making plans to return to work while you are in the retirement process. If you make ANY arrangements with any participating agency or school district to return to work prior to your retirement, you are not entitled to receive your pension for the duration of that employment.

In addition to these stipulations, you may also have to adhere to the Delaware Public Integrity Commission code of conduct post-employment restrictions. Please see http://depic.delaware.gov/ code of conduct statute post-employment restrictions 29 Del C. § 5805(d) for further information.
Learn more here.

Since I have health insurance through the Pension Office, do I need to keep Part B of Medicare?

Yes, you need to keep Part B of Medicare and you need to call our office to notify us of your eligibility. Social Security's reference to having other health insurance pertains to health insurance that you receive while you are actively working or retired but covered by a spouse who is actively working.

It is necessary to have Part A and B to participate in the State's retiree health coverage.

If you refuse Part B when you are eligible, two things will happen to you:
1. Our health insurance will no longer be effective, and
2. Social Security will set a penalty for picking up Part B later.
For disability pensioners who receive Social Security benefits, you will be eligible for Medicare Part A and B within 2 years. You also need to keep Parts A and B. Please call our Office when you receive your Medicare card.

I'm an active employee who has entered into a civil union. What do I need to send to the Pension Office?

Notify your Human Resources Office of the civil union within 30 days of the event. Provide a copy of the civil union solemnization (license). Your HR Office will update the State's HR System (PHRST). The Pension Office database interfaces with PHRST and will receive the change in status. You can send a copy of the civil union solemnization to the Pension Office as well. If not, we will ask for it if you become deceased.

I'm a pensioner who has entered into a civil union. What do I need to send to the Pension Office?

Provide a copy of the civil union solemnization (license) to the Pension Office within 30 days of the event. Review your named beneficiaries for Burial Benefit and lump sum contributory Death Benefit. If you want to add your new dependents to your health care coverage, please contact our office within 30 days of the event.

Who is affected by the changes in pension benefits from HB 81?

Newly hired State Employees on or after 1/1/12

What are the changes created by House Bill 81?

  1. Increase early retirement reduction factor from 0.2% to 0.4%
  2. Increases employee pension contributions from 3% to 5%
  3. Eliminates overtime payments from pension creditable compensation
  4. Changes the normal retirement age to: age 65 with 10 consecutive years of pension creditable service; age 60 with 20 years of pension creditable service; 30 years of pension creditable service at any age; increases vesting from 5 years to 10 years.