Tax forms available online to OPERS members

Ohio Public Employees Retirement System members who are registered for online access may retrieve their 2014 tax forms online beginning Friday.

This feature of the OPERS online account can help members begin to file their taxes. Members can read the 1099-R form online and print it out. The forms will be mailed to all members no later than Jan. 31.

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OPERS rolls out Connector Readiness Kits

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System will spend much of this year transitioning eligible retirees to the OPERS Medicare Connector, which begins operations in 2016. The preparation gets started this week, with the mailing of our Connector Readiness Kit.

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Posted in Connector, Health Care, OPERS, OPERS Medicare Connector | Tagged , , , | 15 Comments

OPERS Member Services had a busy 2014

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System’s Member Services department is often the best place for our members to gain information about their accounts and answers to their questions about pensions and health care.

Member Services employees assist our more than 1 million members with their individual accounts, retirement and health care, and many other issues. Last year was no exception. Here are some examples of the many ways our Member Services associates helped you in 2014:
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Posted in Member Services, Ohio PERS, OPERS | Tagged , | 12 Comments

OPERS posts schedule for holidays

As a reminder to our members and retirees, the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System will be observing the following schedule around the holidays:

  • We will be closed on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
  • Our downtown Columbus offices and call center will close at 2:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve in advance of the holidays.
  • We will be open for business as usual on the day after Christmas and the day after New Year’s.
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OPERS releases December health care video

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has released the latest monthly health care chat with OPERS Health Care Director Marianne Steger.

In the December video, Steger addresses questions that members have sent to us via the PERSpective blog. She covers topics related to the OPERS Medicare Connector, including veterans benefits and how “snowbirds” will sign up for coverage. There also is a discussion about long-term care insurance.

You can click here to access the video, which we’ve posted on our YouTube channel.

Posted in Connector, Health Care | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Legislature OKs measures for members, retirees

The Ohio General Assembly this week approved legislation that will have a positive effect on Ohio Public Employees Retirement System members.

The bill included two proposals endorsed by OPERS: one on joint retirement and another that will allow participation in the OPERS Medicare Connector by members who do not qualify for premium-free Medicare Part A insurance. Lawmakers included the measures in Senate Bill 42, which focused on education safety.

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Public pension funds’ confidence levels on rise

Public pension funds are more confident in their ability to address retirement issues over the next two years, in part because they continue to pare back benefits, an industry study has shown.

The National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems said public funds have passed significant “organizational and operational changes to ensure long-term sustainability for their stakeholders.” They include reductions in retiree health care coverage, higher member contribution rates and better system oversight.

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OPERS introduces website section for Connector

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has introduced a Medicare Connector Readiness page on its website for those seeking information about the upcoming changes to retiree health care.

OPERS will introduce a Connector in 2016 for our retirees enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B. They will choose a Medigap plan or a Medicare Advantage plan and a prescription drug plan on the individual health care market.

The Connector Readiness page includes information about the Connector, Medicare basics and the OPERS Health Care Timeline Tracker, a month-by-month, illustrated calendar of key events leading up to the Connector’s debut in 2016.

Click here to access the Connector Readiness section of OPERS.org.

Posted in Connector, Health Care | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

OPERS releases November health care video

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has released the latest monthly health care chat with OPERS Health Care Director Marianne Steger.

In the November video, Steger addresses questions that members have sent to us via the PERSpective blog. She covers topics such as medical underwriting, Connector reimbursement and monthly allowances for health care coverage.

You can click here to access the video, which we’ve posted on our YouTube channel.

Posted in Health Care | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Deadline approaching for health care coverage

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System will begin fully implementing its new health care plan in 2015.

The new rules are based on changes made in 2012 and amended the following year. They will require members to have at least 20 years of qualifying service credit and be 60 or older before they can retire and become eligible for health care coverage. Retirees can gain health care eligibility with 30 years of service at any age (increasing to 32 years depending on the retirement group they’re in).

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Posted in Health Care, Pensions | Tagged , , | 2 Comments