City of San Diego Retirement Plan Summary For Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, July 31, 2012

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1 City of San Diego Retirement Plan Summary For Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, July 31, 2012 This Retirement Plan Summary provides general information about your retirement plan with the San Diego City Employees Retirement System (SDCERS). The information in this summary is specific to Police Safety members hired from January 1, 2012 through July 31, The information on the following pages is designed to educate you on how you make contributions to SDCERS, earn service credit and, ultimately, if you meet the requirements, can earn a retirement benefit. An overview of how that benefit is calculated upon your retirement is also included. Retirement plan information for other member groups is provided in separate Retirement Plan Summaries. For access to all booklets and publications currently available, visit and click on the Forms & Publications page. ABOUT SDCERS SDCERS provides vested members with a portion of their annual salaries when they retire. In order to attain the appropriate level of funding for each member, SDCERS actuary determines the amount the participating employer and member must contribute each year until the member retires. Members contributions are based on a percentage of salary using the contribution rates adopted by the Board based on a member s age at entry into membership. SDCERS was established by the City of San Diego in 1927 to administer retirement benefits for its members. SDCERS administers its defined benefit retirement plan in accordance with the California State Constitution Article XVI, Section 17, the San Diego City Charter Article IX Sections and Article X, Section 1, and the San Diego Municipal Code Sections et seq. SDCERS provides a comprehensive range of member services to its nearly 20,450 active, retired and deferred members, including the administration of retirement, health and death benefits. A 13-member Board of Administration is responsible for the prudent administration of the benefits and oversees the investment portfolio for the system s trust fund. Board meetings are open to the public; a schedule of these meetings is available at The information in this publication is intended to provide members with a current and accurate summary of retirement benefits. However, it is not a legal document or a substitute for the law. The language used in this publication is not intended to create a contract between the plan sponsor (your employer) and any member. The governing plan document adopted by the member s employer governs the operations of SDCERS. Accordingly, if any information in this publication conflicts with the employer s plan document, the law or the Board Rules, the plan document, law or Board Rules must prevail. Rev

2 Membership in SDCERS & Member Contributions MEMBERSHIP IN SDCERS A Police Safety member is any member who is a sworn officer of the City Police Department or a Police Department recruit employed by the City and participating in the City s Police Academy. All other Police Department employees, including Police Recruits hired on or after July 1, 2013 and those sworn for limited purposes only, are not eligible for Safety membership.* Employees of the City of San Diego working half-time or greater initially hired before July 20, 2013 are required to join the City s defined benefit plan, administered by SDCERS. A defined benefit plan is a retirement plan to which you make contributions while you are a member, and that entitles you to a benefit from the time you retire until your death. Your retirement benefit cannot be changed without a majority vote of the SDCERS membership and is subject to negotiations with impacted labor organizations. MEMBERSHIP IN SDCERS As a Police Safety member, you are required to make bi-weekly, pre-tax contributions from your paycheck to the SDCERS trust fund. These contributions are automatically deducted from your paycheck. Your member contribution rate is based on your age upon entry into SDCERS or into a reciprocal system if you have established reciprocity (see page 6 for more details on reciprocity). Once established, your entry age will remain the same throughout your career with the City, as long as there are no breaks in your service. The contribution rate percentage which corresponds to your entry age, however, may be changed by the Board of Administration of SDCERS. Therefore, your contribution rate may increase or decrease at some point during your SDCERS membership. The table to the right shows the current age-based contribution rates for your SDCERS plan. Entry Age Contribution Rate Percentage Entry Age Contribution Rate Percentage % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % % Rates in effect as of June 30, 2014 *Police Recruits hired on or after July 20, 12 may join SDCERS as a Police Safety Member until June 30, 2013 when the MOU expires. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 2

3 Earning Service Credit & Vesting EARNING SERVICE CREDIT Service Credit represents the amount of time you have earned in the retirement system as a contributing member of SDCERS and is one of the factors used in determining your retirement benefit (pension) amount when you retire. Naturally, the more service credit you have accumulated, the larger your retirement benefit will be. In general: t For each year of full-time employment that you work and make contributions to SDCERS, you will receive one year of service credit. t Credits earned for part-time status are proportionately awarded. For example, if you work 20 hours a week (half-time) and contribute to SDCERS for a year, you would receive six months of service credit for that time period. VESTING You must have at least 10 full years of service credit as a contributing member of SDCERS to be vested in the retirement system and eligible for retirement benefits once you have met the age requirement. You must have at least 10 full years of service credit as a contributing member of SDCERS to be vested in the retirement system and eligible for retirement benefits once you have met the age requirement. Service credit purchased by you may also count toward vesting requirements. See page 4 for more information on Purchase of Service Credit. Reciprocal time may also count toward vesting requirements. See page 6 for more information on Reciprocity. There is no partial vesting in the retirement system. NOTE: The vesting requirement does not apply to the Industrial Disability Benefit (see page 12 for more information on this benefit). Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 3

4 Purchase of Service Credit (PSC) You are allowed to purchase additional service credit for periods of time when you are employed by the City but are not contributing to SDCERS. Because your retirement benefit is based in part on your years of service credit, purchasing service credit may increase your benefit. Purchasing service credit may also allow you to vest and establish eligibility for retirement benefits. Please refer to SDCERS Purchase of Service Credit booklet for detailed information on the types of service credit that are eligible for purchase and the related rules. Purchase of Service Credit (PSC) types related to employment Service credit may be purchased for a variety of time periods during which you were employed, yet you were not making contributions to SDCERS. These types of purchases include: t Military Leave t Long-Term Disability Leave t Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) periods t Special leaves of absence without pay, including any period before reinstatement by the Civil Service Commission t Part-time or hourly employment The cost to purchase this additional service credit is the cost as of the date the service credit quote is issued to the member. You may also redeposit previously refunded contributions upon rehire. To do so, you must: 1. If you withdrew at termination, you can only redeposit if rehired by the City into a position eligible for membership. 2. Must redeposit contributions plus interest. 3. You cannot use a pay plan - you must pay by lump sum payment in cash or rollover from another qualified plan. 4. Once payment is complete, you will be placed in the prior tier and are eligible for benefits in place at the time of termination or current benefits tier, whichever is greater. If you are placed in a prior, higher level of benefits, you must pay the difference in contributions retroactive to the date of your rehire. PROCESS TO PURCHASE SERVICE CREDIT Before submitting an application to purchase service credit, you are encouraged to use the SDCERS Purchase of Service Estimator on the SDCERS website homepage. The Estimator is an easy-to-use tool for our members to calculate the cost to purchase additional service credit for periods of time when you did not contribute to SDCERS. Note: please estimate the cost and confirm whether you have funds available to make the purchase prior to submitting a formal application. After calculating the cost, if you are still interested in purchasing service credit, simply sign in to the member Portal at and submit a Purchase of Service Credit Request form, or download and print the Purchase of Service Credit Request form and submit it to SDCERS. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 4

5 Termination & Deferred Retirement If you terminate employment with the City of San Diego prior to being eligible for a retirement benefit, your election of the options available may have different consequences depending on whether or not you are vested in the retirement system. Please refer to SDCERS Termination & Deferred Membership booklet for further details. TERMINATION IMPORTANT: When you terminate, you will receive a termination packet from SDCERS that must be completed and returned, to instruct SDCERS as to what you would like to do with your contributions on account. Terminating employment as a non-vested member If you terminate employment, whether or not you are vested, you have several options: t You may choose to take your contributions in the form of an immediate lump sum, which will be taxed; or t You may choose to take your contributions in the form of a rollover of the pre-tax portion of your account balance to a Rollover IRA or other qualified plan*; or t You may leave your contributions on account with SDCERS. If you do, your contributions will continue to earn interest at the actuarial assumed interest rate in effect for the period your contributions remain with SDCERS. * Some plans will accept a rollover of post-tax contributions. You should check with your chosen plan to determine if you can roll over post-tax contributions. IIf you choose to take a refund of your retirement contributions and interest, SDCERS will issue a check payable to you, less the mandatory 20% federal income tax withholding and 2% state income tax withholding. Upon receipt of these funds, you would no longer be eligible for any SDCERS retirement benefits, including disability retirement benefits, unless you return to City service and re-deposit your contributions, plus interest. This option as part of the Purchase of Service Credit program is explained on page 4. You may also refer to SDCERS Termination & Deferred Membership booklet for further details. Reciprocity or Returning to City Service If you want to establish reciprocity with a reciprocal system, you must leave your contributions on deposit with SDCERS (see page 6 for details on Reciprocity). You should also leave your contributions on deposit if you believe you may return to City service or you intend to work for another SDCERS participating agency (e.g., the Port or Airport) in the future. Please refer to SDCERS Reciprocity booklet for further details. DEFERRED RETIREMENT If you terminate employment with the City of San Diego and are vested in the retirement system, but do not yet meet the minimum age requirement necessary to receive a retirement benefit, or you do not wish to retire, you may leave your member contributions on deposit with SDCERS and qualify for benefits on the date you become age eligible. This is called deferred retirement. Your retirement benefit will be based on your service credit earned, as well as service credit you purchased, while working at the City, and on the retirement benefits in effect on the day you terminated and left your contributions with SDCERS. Please refer to SDCERS Termination & Deferred Membership booklet for further details. If you choose to take a refund of your contributions, you waive your right to any future benefits, including disability retirement. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 5

6 Reciprocity Reciprocity is a way for Members who move between one or more reciprocal government agency retirement systems to qualify for certain benefits and combine their service credit in each system to meet vesting and eligibility requirements. Please refer to SDCERS Reciprocity booklet for detailed information. Reciprocity is not governed by SDCERS. Rather, SDCERS has a reciprocity agreement with the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS). Agencies such as SDCERS who have this agreement with CalPERS also have reciprocity agreements with each other. As a result, more than 1,200 governmental agencies in California including county agencies, independent public agency retirement systems, and systems who are actually members of CalPERS have reciprocal agreements. For a list of these governmental agencies having reciprocity with SDCERS, visit under Member Benefits/Active members, select your membership type and then the Reciprocity page. Information on reciprocal government agencies can be found on that page, as well as within the CalPERS Reciprocity Brochure, also provided via a link on the Reciprocity page. Requirements To establish reciprocity, you must begin membership with the reciprocal retirement system within 180 days of terminating with your previous employer. You may establish incoming or outgoing reciprocity with SDCERS. That is, you may enter SDCERS membership having service credit in another reciprocal system, or you may leave SDCERS membership and begin membership with a reciprocal employer. In both cases, you may establish reciprocity if you move between systems within 180 days. If you have overlapping service credit in both systems (i.e., you start work in the second system before terminating membership in the first system) you will not establish reciprocity. You must leave your contributions on deposit with each associated agency until you retire, and you must retire from all reciprocal systems on the same date. If you have eligible service credit in a reciprocal system, your SDCERS age-based contribution rate, creditable service required for vesting, and salary used in calculating your benefit amount could be more favorable if you establish reciprocity. * Beginning a position with the City of San Diego where you are only enrolled in a Defined Contribution plan or otherwise ineligible for SDCERS Membership DOES NOT qualify you for SDCERS Membership and therefore you would not be eligible to establish incoming reciprocity even if you were coming from a reciprocal employer. How Reciprocity Works When You Retire When you retire, you will receive a separate retirement benefit from each system, based on the service credit you earned while in each system. Your service credit in each system, however, may be combined for purposes of meeting specific vesting and eligibility requirements. Also, SDCERS may use your highest final compensation under any reciprocal system when calculating your retirement benefit and may use your entry age with your previous employer as your age of entry with SDCERS, which can lower your contribution rate. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 6

7 Service Retirement Service Retirement Eligibility To be eligible for an SDCERS service retirement benefit as a Public Safety Member, you must meet the following minimum service credit and age requirements when you retire from the City. The minimum age and service credit requirements are as follows: t Age 50 (or older) with 20 or more years of service credit; or t Age 55 (or older) with 10 or more years of service credit There is no mandatory retirement age. SDCERS will not automatically retire you when you become eligible to retire. Once you meet the retirement eligibility requirements, it is solely up to your discretion when you choose to retire. You must contact SDCERS and complete a retirement application prior to the effective date of your retirement. Service Retirement Benefit Your service retirement benefit is based on a formula that includes: t How long you work for the City; t How old you are when you retire; and t What your average highest earnings are during your career for any three-years. The specifics of how that benefit is calculated are detailed on pages 8 and 9. Unlike a 401(k) or similar type of defined contribution plan, your service retirement benefit is not based on how much money you contribute to the plan. Below is some general information to remember: Your Service Retirement Benefit Formula As a City of San Diego Police Safety Member, your basic retirement benefit, called the Maximum Benefit Option, is commonly referred to as 2.5% at 50. This means, if you retire at age 50, you will receive 2.5% of your final compensation for each year of service credit you have earned. The Maximum Benefit retirement factor increases incrementally with your age at retirement. See page 9 for an example of how the benefit is calculated. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 7

8 How Your Service Retirement Benefit is Calculated Several factors defined on these pages determine the amount of your benefit. Your age-based factor means that, depending on how old you are when you retire, you will receive a certain percentage of your pensionable salary (final compensation) based on the average of your three highest years at any time during membership in SDCERS. Below is a chart showing the factors used, depending on your age at retirement. Retirement Age FActors for Maximum Benefit Option Retirement Age Age-Based Retirement Factors % % % % Retirement Age Factors The Retirement Age Factor chart (left) illustrates the corresponding percentages that are used to calculate your retirement benefit estimate based on your age at retirement and selection of the Maximum Benefit Option. The Maximum Benefit Option is described on page 10. Age Factor 2.5% at age 50 (not to exceed 90% of your final compensation) % % PRESERVATION OF BENEFITS (POB) PLAN Because SDCERS is a tax-qualified retirement plan, it must meet certain requirements of the Internal Revenue Code. Section 415(b) of the Code limits the extent to which retirement benefits may be provided by a qualified pension plan such as SDCERS. To comply with Section 415(b), SDCERS must annually test benefits paid to its members and beneficiaries. Any benefits in excess of Section 415(b) cannot be paid from the SDCERS Trust Fund. If your retirement benefit exceeds certain limits set forth by Section 415(b) of the Code, you will still receive your benefit, but the benefit must be paid from two separate sources. To pay the benefits promised to retired members, but which exceed Section 415(b) limits, the City Council established a Preservation of Benefit Plan (POB Plan). The City's POB Plan is a qualified excess benefit arrangement (QEBA) that facilitates the payment of benefits above 415(b) limits. Under IRS rules, the City's POB Plan must be funded independently of SDCERS. If your annual benefit will exceed Section 415(b) limits in any given year, SDCERS will contact you to explain in detail how your benefit will be distributed from the SDCERS Trust Fund and the City's POB fund. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 8

9 Retirement Benefit Formula & Calculation Example Age-Based Retirement Factor The Age-Based Retirement Factor is the percentage of your salary you will receive as a retirement benefit for each year of service credit you have when you retire. The Factor is based on your age at retirement. X X Service Credit is the time you earn while a contributing member of SDCERS that is, making contributions to the retirement fund. Service credit will also include any service credit you have purchased prior to entry into DROP or retirement. Unmodified Retirement Allowance Service Credit Final Compensation COL Annuity Final Compensation is calculated by identifying the average of your highest three years of pensionable salary at any time during membership The COL Annuity is calculated by annuitizing the portion of accumulated contributions from your paycheck that go into your cost of living annuity account. = = Unmodified Retirement Allowance Monthly Retirement Benefit Base Retirement Benefit Calculation Example For Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, July 31, 2012 Seargent Sam Diego decides to retire when he is 50 years old. Sam s Age-Based Retirement Factor (based on the table on Page 8) will be 2.5%. At age 50, Sam has 20 years of Service Credit. Sam s highest average highest three years of pensionable salary is $80,000. This represents his Final Compensation. Sam s base retirement benefit is calculated as follows: Age-based Retirement Factor = 2.5% 2.5% x 20 years of service credit = 50%, so 50% x $80,000 final compensation = $40,000 unmodified retirement allowance + COLA Annuity of $2,121 = $42,121 per year service retirement benefit (paid as a $3,510 monthly benefit) Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 9

10 Retirement Benefit Options When you retire, you must choose a benefit payment option to calculate your retirement benefit. The options are: Maximum benefit Option The Maximum Benefit is the standard retirement benefit, providing you the highest possible monthly lifetime benefit. It also guarantees your spouse or Registered Domestic Partner (RDP) a 50% lifetime continuance upon your death. You must be married or in a registered domestic partnership continuously from the date you retire until the date of your death and must designate your spouse or RDP as your beneficiary. Single members who select this benefit may either receive a lump sum refund of their surviving spouse contributions, including interest, or have these contributions treated as voluntary additional contributions made to provide a larger benefit. Benefit Option 1 (no Continuance) Option 1 allows members to name anyone to receive a refund of unused contributions, if any remain, at the time of the member s death. Option 1 does not, however, allow the member to name anyone for a lifetime continuance. If, at the time of the member s death, the amount of annuity payments paid was equal to or more than the accumulated contributions made throughout their careeer, no money will be paid to the named Beneficiary. If, however, the amount of annuity payments paid was less than the accumulated contributions, SDCERS will pay the difference to the member s named Beneficiary or estate. Benefit Options 2, 3 and 4 In addition to the Maximum Benefit Option, three other options exist to allow you to name your spouse/rdp or someone other than your spouse or RDP to receive a lifetime continuance upon your death. Options 2, 3 and 4 allow more flexibility than the Maximum Benefit for naming a beneficiary to receive a continuance. Under these options, the member s Beneficiary can be a spouse, but can also be a child or any other person the member selects. If you select Benefit Option 2 or 4, the survivor benefit for a named non-spouse Beneficiary is reduced when the age differential between you and your named non-spouse Beneficiary is greater than 10 years. The reduction is increased for each year of age differential up to a maximum reduction at 44 years and greater. Under all three options, the monthly benefit that you will receive is actuarially reduced based on the age of the Beneficiary named to receive a continuance. The percentage the Beneficiary receives is listed below: Option 2 Option 3 Option 4 Continuance is 100% of member s reduced benefit Continuance is 50% of member s reduced benefit Continuance percentage of member s reduced benefit is chosen by the member Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 10

11 Annual Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) You ve learned how to calculate your base retirement allowance, explained on page 9. Also important to understand is the annual COLA that is part of your base retirement allowance. Each year on July 1, following your retirement date, your monthly retirement benefit may be increased by applying a COLA, not to exceed 2%. The COLA is based on increases or decreases in the nationwide Consumer Price Index (CPI) in the last calendar year, as measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor. CPI increases that exceed 2% in any given year will be banked for future years. In years when the CPI does not increase up to the 2% COLA maximum, the difference will be taken from your bank to provide a full 2% increase. For example, if the CPI in your second year of retirement increased by 3%, your retirement benefit would increase by 2% in the form of a 2% COL, and the extra 1% would be set aside for use in future years. If, in the following year, the CPI only increased by 1%, you would then draw upon the extra 1% set aside from the previous year in order to receive the full 2% maximum COLA increase on your retirement benefit. COLA are also applied to survivor benefits. Consumer Price Index increases that exceed 2% in any given year will be banked for future years. In years when the CPI does not increase up to the 2% COL Adjustment maximum, the difference will be taken from your bank to provide a full 2% increase. PROPOSITION B - COMPREHENSIVE PENSION REFORM In June 2012, Proposition B, otherwise known as Comprehensive Pension Reform (CPR), passed by the electorate. Proposition B amended the City Charter to eliminate Defined Benefit pensions for City employees who are initially hired by the City of San Diego on or after July 20, 2012, expect for sworn police officers. Sworn Police Safety Members, regardless of when they were hired, remain in the Defined Benefit program. Police Recruits remained eligible to join SDCERS until the expiration of the existing MOU on June 30, Effective July 1, 2013, Police Recruits cannot join SDCERS until they become sworn police officers. For more information regarding Prop B, visit and click on the Latest News page. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 11

12 Disability Retirement There are two types of disability retirement benefits available to Safety Members: 1. Industrial Disability Retirement Industrial disability retirement benefits are available to Members who become permanently incapacitated by bodily injury or illness caused by their job, are unable to perform the usual duties of their job and are required to retire because of that permanent incapacity. You do not need to be vested to be eligible for an Industrial Disability Retirement. There are also federal tax benefits associated with this type of benefit. If awarded, an industrial disability retirement is the higher of the following amounts: t 50% of your final compensation (average of your highest three years of pensionable salary); or t If you are service eligible, your service retirement benefit 2. Non-Industrial Disability Retirement If you have at least 10 years of creditable service; become permanently incapacitated by a non-work related injury or illness; are unable to perform your usual job duties and are required to retire because of your disability; you may be eligible for a non-industrial disability retirement. There are NO federal tax benefits associated with this type of benefit. If awarded, a non-industrial disability is the higher of the following amounts: t 33 1/3% of your final compensation; or t 1.5% x number of years of service x highest one-year salary t If you are service eligible, your service retirement benefit In the case of both an Industrial Disability Retirement and a Non-Industrial Disability Retirement, you must go through the application process. Based on the findings, the SDCERS Board will determine if you are awarded a disability retirement. For more information on Disability Retirements see SDCERS Disability Retirement booklet under the Forms & Publications section at Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 12

13 Member Resources Publications SDCERS offers a variety of publications for active and retired members. This publication and others can be accessed through the Forms & Publications section of (see page 14 for detailed information on the website and Member Portal), or you can request a hard copy. The SDCERS Scoop newsletter is mailed to all members home addresses, and contains a variety of news, benefit updates and educational information. SDCERS Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) is available online, and the Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR) a condensed version of the comprehensive financial report is mailed to all members each year. Visit the Forms & Publications section at to view/print a variety of other publications offered by SDCERS. Call Center & Member Counseling For general information and questions, please contact SDCERS Call Center between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, at For information about your retirement benefit options, you may schedule a counseling appointment with an SDCERS Retirement Counselor when you are within twelve months of retiring, by contacting the Call Center. Pre-Retirement Seminars Active members regardless of how close they are to retirement age are encouraged to enroll in one of SDCERS Pre-Retirement Seminars, designed to educate members on their benefit options and the retirement process. Related topics such as reciprocity, beneficiaries, and other important issues are also covered in these seminars. To enroll in a seminar, please call Social Media Join SDCERS on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin for general retirement information, announcements, legal issues and educational pieces to assist members with planning for and enjoying their retirement. Outside Resources for Information on Deferred Compensation SDCERS does not handle your deferred compensation retirement plans, such as the 401(k) and 457 plans. These benefits are adminstered by the City of San Diego. You may contact the City s Risk Management Department for general information by calling or by visiting their website. Below are direct contact numbers for the plans: 401(k) Deferred Compensation Plan Contact Wells Fargo at Deferred Compensation Plan Contact VALIC at Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 13

14 SDCERS comprehensive website provides a wealth of information for members, retirees and the general public. The site is comprised of two main components: Public website The general, public-accessible website contains SDCERSrelated news, documents, forms, board agendas and videos, and detailed retirement benefit information for all membership types A Benefit Calculator is also available for members seeking to get an approximate estimate of their retirement benefit by entering in different variables. This is an estimate only and your final retirement benefit amount may differ. Member Portal The Member Portal is a feature within the website where active, deferred and retired members can set up an account and log in to view personalized information such as the balance of their member contribution account, years of service credit, or, when retired, a historical accounting of retirement benefit payments. Active, deferred and retired embers may also use the portal to submit important information to SDCERS, such as changes to their named beneficiary. See further details on page 15. Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 14

15 Beneficiary Designation When you became an SDCERS member, you were asked to designate a Beneficiary to receive any death benefits for which your Beneficiary(ies) are eligible, upon your death as an Active member of SDCERS. In most cases, the most recent Beneficiary designation on file with SDCERS is used to distribute Active member death benefits. The easiest way to update a beneficiary is to access SDCERS member Portal, at and submit changes directly online Active members initially designate Beneficiaries when they become SDCERS members, but may also change their Beneficiary designation at any time prior to retirement. Read the SDCERS Death Benefits booklet, available at for detailed information on the rules of designating and changing beneficiaries. If you are an Active member, it is important that you keep Beneficiaries up to date, particularly if your personal situation changes. In the case of divorce, for example, you should file a new designation even if you wish to continue naming your now ex-spouse as your beneficiary because, by law, your designation is rendered void by divorce unless you clearly indicate an intention to keep your ex-spouse as your beneficiary. When you retire, you will be required to designate a Beneficiary to receive certain death benefits available to them, depending on which benefit option you choose at the time of retirement, as described above. After you retire, you may not change the beneficiary you designated to receive a continuance. You can, however, change the beneficiary you designated to receive any other monies at your death (e.g., $2,000 death benefit, DROP monies or days of pay). Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 15

16 Notes 401 West A Street, Suite 400 San Diego, CA Mail Station #840 Retirement Plan Summary for City of San Diego Police Safety Members Hired Jan. 1, 2012 through July 31, 2012 Page 16

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