The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has released the Retirement Planner, its latest tool to help members prepare for retirement.
The planner, accessible from our website, permits members closest to retirement in OPERS’ traditional pension plan to estimate pension benefits and health care costs at different retirement dates.
Because of upcoming changes to the OPERS retiree health care plan, the tool could prove invaluable in helping these members, who are eligible to retire within the next four years, pinpoint the ideal time frame for retirement.
By using the OPERS Retirement Planner, these “transition Group A” members can compare their working income with their retirement income, determine the impact of working longer, or forecast their employer and retiree health care costs. It’s the first time that we’ve offered a comprehensive planning tool combining both pension and health care information.
The planner’s release is timely because of changes to OPERS health care coverage that will go into effect at the beginning of 2015. They include:
- New eligibility rules: The new program will require members to have at least 20 years of qualifying service and be at least 60 years of age to qualify for health care, or have 30 years of qualifying service time at any age. This means that members will have only until the end of November to decide whether to retire under the current eligibility requirement of 10 years of service time.
- Allowance reduction: The new health care plan will base the premium allowance given to participants on age and service. There will be a three-year transition, but all members will be subject to the new allowance tables by 2018.
We encourage all of our members to visit our website over the next several months for additional retirement information, tools and resources. Transition group membership can be determined by using this chart.