THE MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES ANNUITY AND BENEFIT FUND OF CHICAGO

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1 THE MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES ANNUITY AND BENEFIT FUND OF CHICAGO BOOKLET OF INFORMATION ON THE LAW GOVERNING THE FUND INCLUDING AMENDATORY PROVISIONS THROUGH JULY 1, 2002 OFFICE OF THE FUND 221 North LaSalle Street, Room 500 Chicago, Illinois (312)

2 MAJOR AMENDMENTS DUE TO LEGISLATIVE CHANGES (House Bill 600 signed January 16, 2004) Automatic increases in annuities will now take effect in the January of each year in which they are to be provided. (amendment to page 24) An employee who previously withdrew contributions from the Fund, may have his rights under the Fund restored after repaying the withdrawn contributions with interest after completing the required amount of service after the date of the refund. The required service is: 90 days of service under this Fund, or 2 years of service under any participating Fund under the Reciprocal Act. (amendment to page 41)

3 THE MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES ANNUITY AND BENEFIT FUND OF CHICAGO BOOKLET OF INFORMATION ON THE LAW GOVERNING THE FUND INCLUDING AMENDATORY PROVISIONS THROUGH JULY 1, 2002 OFFICE OF FUND 221 North LaSalle Street, Room 500 Chicago, Illinois (312)

4 THE MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES ANNUITY AND BENEFIT FUND OF CHICAGO THE RETIREMENT BOARD (Board of Trustees) John K. Gibson... President (Elective Member) Tariq G. Malhance... Vice-President (City Comptroller, Ex-Officio Member) Judith C. Rice... Treasurer (City Treasurer and Ex-Officio Member and Treasurer) Joseph M. Malatesta... Recording Secretary (Elective Member) Peter Brejnak... Trustee (Elective Member) APPOINTED BY THE BOARD Terrance R. Stefanski...Executive Director William A. Marovitz... Attorney Frederick P. Heiss... Attorney Gabriel, Roeder, Smith & Company... Actuary Terence P. Sullivan, M.D.... Physician 2

5 TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. Introduction General Provisions... 7 A. Inception of the Fund B. Applying for Benefits and Benefit Counseling C. Persons Included D. Persons Automatically Excluded E. Administration F. Treasurer and Legal Advisor G. Investments H. Income of the Fund and Rate of Employee and City Contributions 1. Annual Tax Levy 2. Investment Income 3. Deductions from Employees Salaries 3. Major Amendments Annuities for Employees A. Age and Service Requirements for Employee Annuities B. Methods For Determining Employee Annuity C. TABLE 1 - Percentage of Salary Payable Under the Minimum 10 Year Service Formula Annuity D. Annuity Increases after Retirement E. Reversionary Annuity 5. Surviving Spouse Annuities A. Age and Service Requirements for Spouse Annuities B. Methods For Determining Spouse Annuities C. Duty Death - Spouse Annuity D. Spouses Not Entitled to Annuity 6. Annuities for Children Credit for Service Prior to Date of Membership in the Fund Service for Certain Governmental Units of the State of Illinois: Reciprocal Act Disability Benefits A. Ordinary Disability B. Duty Disability 3

6 TABLE OF CONTENTS 10. Refund of Annuity Contributions A. Refund to Employee upon Withdrawal from Service B. Possible Refund to Employee s Children, Heirs, Estate, or Designated Person C. Refund in Lieu of Annuity D. Refund of Salary Deductions if Employee is Not Married 11. Repayment of Refunds Computation of Service Credit Qualified Illinois Domestic Relations Order (QILDRO) Suspension of Benefits Present Income Tax Information A. Federal Income Tax 1. Annuities 2. Refunds, IRA Rollovers B. State of Illinois Income Tax 16. Deductions from Annuity for Health Insurance Conclusion TABLE INDEX Table 1 Table Showing Percentage of Salary Payable Under the Minimum 10 Year Service Formula Annuity Table 2 Reversionary Annuity Factors

7 1. INTRODUCTION March 2003 To the Participants in the Municipal Employees Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago This booklet has been prepared by the Retirement Board to provide general information about the benefits available to the members of this system, and to the survivors of deceased members. A detailed and complete coverage of all the applicable law would defeat the purpose of this handbook. Correspondingly, it is not intended to contain a synopsis of all the provisions of the law governing the Municipal Employees Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago, either. Individual circumstances can differ and may require explanations and examples that would be somewhat different from those contained herein. The full text of the law governing the Fund may be found in Chapter 40, Act 5, Articles 1, 8 and 20 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes, and supersedes anything stated or implied in this booklet. Recently, the Illinois State Legislature amended certain sections of the law governing the Fund; and, we are pleased to inform you of these improvements. Changes with the greatest significance are: the 2.4% accrual rate with an 80% maximum; earlier post-retirement increases for eligible retirees; greater benefits for eligible spouses of employees who die in service; elimination of the service requirement for child s annuity if the employee dies in service; and ordinary disability salary deductions paid by the Fund. These changes and others are discussed at the respective sections in this booklet as well as the Major Amendments section. 5

8 Our sole mission is to provide benefits for you, the members. Let us assure you of our continued commitment to our mission; and, to our primary goals to provide you with the best service, and to preserve the fiscal integrity and financial stability of the Fund. On behalf of the entire membership, the Board of Trustees, once again, express their most sincere appreciation to the Mayor, City Council and other City Officials, and to the Governor and members of the Illinois State Legislature, for their steadfast support of legislative changes intended to improve benefits and strengthen the Fund. We hope you enjoy reading this handbook. Respectfully submitted, The Retirement Board, Municipal Employees Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago 6

9 2. GENERAL PROVISIONS A. Inception of the Fund The Municipal Employees Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago came into being in the year 1921 by virtue of an Act of the Illinois Legislature. It superseded the former Municipal Pension Fund, which was created by Act of the Legislature in the year 1911, and also the Public School Employees Pension Fund, which was established in the year The present Municipal Employees Annuity and Benefit Fund, which will hereinafter be referred to as the Fund, applies to cities in the State of Illinois having populations of more than 500,000 inhabitants. B. Applying for Benefits and Benefit Counseling Employee participants may call this office to set up an appointment to receive information about their benefit rights. Employees may also request to have an estimate of benefits sent to them by mail. Every effort is made to provide the information requested as quickly as possible. An employee considering retirement should request an estimate of benefits before finalizing his or her resignation. If the employee has any service credit to be established or reestablished, or has any service credit with a reciprocal fund, the employee should request an estimate at least six months before resignation. It is advisable that applicants for benefits make an appointment with this office to ensure that their applications are properly filed. If it is not possible to appear at this office, the application will be mailed to the employee participant upon request. Before a benefit application can be considered for payment, an applicant will be required to submit proof of date of birth, spouse s date of birth, a marriage certificate, children s dates of birth, death certificate, or divorce papers, if applicable. When you are hired, a Fund Membership Record Form will be given to you by your employer and should be returned to the Fund promptly. The Designated Beneficiary portion must be notarized in order to be in effect. There are notaries available at the Fund office if you personally return the Membership Record Form and would like to designate your beneficiary at that time. 7

10 Delay in receipt of benefits may result if the Membership Record Form and proofs have not been submitted. C. Persons Included The Fund automatically covers and includes all employees of the City of Chicago and Board of Education of the City of Chicago except teachers, policemen, firemen, and laborers. The constitutionally elected officials, employees of the Law Department of the City of Chicago and employees of the Board of Election Commissioners, whether or not such persons are serving by temporary appointment or in a provisional or exempt position as specified in the personnel ordinance, may elect to join the Fund. The Fund also covers and includes: (1) Elected officials of the City of Chicago who, while in office, file written application for membership with the Retirement Board. (2) Law Department and Board of Election Commissioners employees with service of one year or more who file written application for membership with the Retirement Board. (3) Employees employed by the Retirement Board. (4) Employees employed by the Public Building Commission, who have service credit in the Municipal Fund, and who file a written application for membership with the Retirement Board. (5) Employees employed by the Chicago Housing Authority, who have service credit in the Municipal Fund, and who file a written application for membership with the Retirement Board. D. Persons Automatically Excluded The Fund excludes: (1) Those who work in positions ordinarily not requiring at least four months of service during a year if salary is arranged on a monthly basis, and certain minimum periods for persons with salaries arranged on a weekly, daily, or hourly basis. (2) Those classified as being in the labor service, excepting those who are already participants in the Fund. 8

11 (3) Those who are covered and included in some other public fund in operation in the City of Chicago for the benefit of employees of the City of Chicago or Board of Education of the City of Chicago, such as policemen, firemen, teachers, and certain others, or in another pension fund of the Chicago Housing Authority or the Public Building Commission. A person receiving an annuity from the Chicago Police, Fire, Teachers, Laborers, or Park District Pension Funds (except for a spouse annuity), is not eligible to be a member of this Fund. E. Administration The Fund is administered by a Board of Trustees, called The Retirement Board. This board is composed of five members: the City Treasurer and the City Comptroller as ex-officio members, and three members who are elected by the contributors to the Fund. The elective members must be employees who hold their position in service by certification and appointment as a result of competitive civil service examination as distinguished from temporary appointment, for a period of not less than five years prior to the date of election for trustee, or who hold a position that is not exempt from the personnel ordinance. The Retirement Board elects one of its own members as president and one as recording secretary, and is by law required to hold regular meetings in the months of March, June, September and December of each year. Because of the large volume of business to be transacted, however, it actually holds meetings at least once each month, and sometimes more often. The Retirement Board, among its many other duties, is required by law to consider and pass upon all applications for annuity and benefits; to invest the monies of the Fund in a certain prescribed manner; to make rules and regulations for the proper conduct of the affairs of the Fund; to have an audit of the accounts of the Fund made at least once each year by a person qualified to perform such service; and to submit a detailed report of the affairs of the Fund to the City Council each year. F. Treasurer and Legal Advisor The law provides that the City Treasurer shall be the Treasurer and Custodian of the Fund. The Corporation Counsel of the City is the legal advisor of the Retirement Board. 9

12 G. Investments The Municipal Fund invests the reserves of the plan under the prudent person rule. The prudent person rule requires that a fiduciary discharge his duties with respect to a plan with the care, skill, prudence, and diligence under the circumstances then prevailing that a prudent person acting in a like capacity and familiar with such matters would use in the conduct of an enterprise of a like character with like aims. In summary, by State Statute, some investments for the Fund that would be deemed prudent are: U.S. Government, U.S. Government agencies, and other obligations guaranteed by either; municipal bonds; first mortgage bonds, debentures, and notes of any corporation of the United States or of any state, district, or territory thereof; obligations of the government of Canada or any of its provinces; and certain government agency mortgages. Also deemed prudent are common and preferred stocks and convertible debentures; deposits in federal and state-chartered savings and loans, state and national banks and federal and state credit unions; listed options, contracts, and agreements of an Illinois-authorized life insurer; mortgage pass-through securities; pooled or separate funds managed by a national or Illinois state bank, national or Illinois life insurance company for preferred and common stock or real estate and loans upon real estate; shares of a registered investment company. The Retirement Board is authorized to employ investment counsel. Each advisor is registered under The Advisor s Act of H. Income of the Fund and Rate of Employee and City Contributions The Fund derives its income from three primary sources: (1) a tax levy made annually for the purposes of the Fund; (2) investment income; and (3) deductions from employees salaries. (1) Annual tax levy: the annual tax levy for the Fund is an amount equal to the amount of contributions by the employees to the Fund made in the calendar year two years prior to the year for which the tax was levied, multiplied by All City contributions for the purposes of the Fund are derived from this tax. 10

13 All payments by the City are made by means of a separate special tax levied for purposes of the Fund, and the City s payments or contributions are thus not paid out of the general or corporate or other funds of the City but out of the special tax receipts from the levy made solely for the purposes of the Fund. If the tax levied and collected in any year is insufficient to cover all of the required City contributions for such year, the deficit will have to be made up through an eventual increase in the authorized levy for the Fund by Act of the State Legislature. (2) Investment income: the investment income of the Fund is substantial and is an important item. Every dollar of such income received reduces the tax load by the same amount. In a sound pension plan, the investment income alone finances a considerable portion of the annual pension payments. (3) Deductions from employees salaries: (a) All employee participants have a deduction of 6.5% made from each salary payment for the purpose of providing an annuity for themselves. (b) All participants have an additional 1.5% deducted from each payment of salary for the purpose of providing a surviving spouse s annuity. (c) All participants have an additional.5% deducted from each salary payment for the purpose of providing the automatic post-retirement or cost-of-living increases in annuity after retirement. (d) In addition to the above deductions, Board of Education employees who have the Board of Education pay 7% of their salary for pension contributions have an additional deduction of.595% made from each salary payment. This additional deduction allows the 7% Board of Education pickup to be added to the employee s salary in calculating final average salary. (e) The City pays the entire cost of ordinary and duty disability benefits and cost of administration. The above stated percentages are applied to the amount of compensation or salary appropriated, fixed or arranged for the employee s position, exclusive of overtime or extra salary. 11

14 3. MAJOR AMENDMENTS Significant Amendments Made in the 2002 Legislative Session HB5168 & SB314 Approved June 28, 2002 and July 1, 2002 Beginning January 1, 2002, the accrual rate for the minimum formula annuity is changed from 2.2% to 2.4% of final average salary and the maximum annuity is changed from 75% to 80% of final average salary. Eligible present and future employee annuitants receive the 3% post-retirement increase beginning at the latest of the first payment date after the third anniversary of retirement, age 53, or January 1, 2002, if this is earlier than the first payment date after the first anniversary of retirement or age 60. For the eligible spouse of an employee who dies in service on or after August 27, 2002, with at least 10 years of service, the annuity is to be no less than 50% of the minimum formula annuity the employee would have been entitled to based on service and salary to the date of death without regard to age eligibility requirements. This is equal to 2.4% of final average salary for each year of service. The marriage has to be in effect for ten full years at the date of death. For children of employees who die in service on or after June 28, 2002, there is no service requirement for eligibility for children s annuity. For ordinary disability benefits paid on or after January 1, 2001, the ordinary disability benefit is 50% of the employee s salary at the date of disability. The amounts ordinarily contributed by the employee for annuity purposes are provided by the Fund. These deductions would not be refundable. Significant Amendments Made in the 2001 Legislative Session EGTRRA On June 7, 2001, the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 was signed by President Bush. Beginning January 1, 2002, payments for eligible optional service credits may be made with funds rolled 12

15 over from a 457 deferred compensation plan or a 403(b) tax deferred annuity plan (if allowed by the 457 or 403(b) plan). Significant Amendments Made in the 2000 Legislative Session HB1583 Approved July 6, 2000 For those annuities granted before January 1, 1998, all payments will be made on the first day of the calendar month, for the entire month without proration. The reversionary annuity table is extended down to age 50 from age 55. An employee or widow(er) whose annuity would amount to less than $800 per month may elect to receive a refund in lieu of annuity. The Board may pay an annuity (if the person qualifies) directly to a Medicare approved, State certified nursing home or to a publicly owned and operated nursing home, hospital, or mental institution. Annuities of a widow(er) who remarry on or after September 4, 2000, would not be terminated upon remarriage. Significant Amendments Made in the 1999 Legislative Session No Changes Significant Amendments Made in the 1998 Legislative Session HB1612 Approved August 11, 1998 Allows Qualified Illinois Domestic Relations Orders beginning July 1, HB3515 Approved August 14, 1998 Beginning January 1, 1999, any employee already receiving an annuity as of August 14, 1998, will receive a minimum of $850 per month for life (reciprocal annuitants must have at least 5 years of Municipal service). Any future employee annuitant withdrawing from 13

16 service after August 14, 1998, after attainment of age 60 with 10 or more years of service would qualify for this minimum. Beginning January 1, 1999, widow(er)s already receiving an annuity as of August 14, 1998 will receive a minimum of $800 per month for life (reciprocal annuitants must have at least 5 years of Municipal service). For spouses of retirees dying after August 14, 1998, 10 years of service is required. For spouses of employees dying in service after August 14, 1998, 5 years of service is required. Beginning January 1, 1999, the automatic annual increase for employee annuitants changed to 3% compounded for all past current and future annuitants regardless of the effective date of the annuity. Term annuities are not eligible for the increase. Employees withdrawing on or after January 1, 1999 with at least 10 years of service will be eligible for the minimum formula upon attainment of age 60. Beginning August 14, 1998, an employee can elect to reduce his or her annuity by a maximum of $400 per month to provide a reversionary annuity to a surviving spouse, parent, child, brother, or sister. A reversionary annuity when added to a surviving spouse annuity cannot exceed the employee s reduced annuity. The waiting period between the employee s signing of the reversionary designation and the death of the employee is decreased from 2 years to 1 year for reversionary annuities paid to a parent, child, brother, or sister. Spouses and widows that are eligible for the 50% of employee amount will no longer have this amount reduced for under age 55 if the employee dies after January 1, 1998 and withdrew from service on or after June 27, 1997, and the employee retired after age 55 with at least 25 years of service or after age 50 with at least 30 years of service. The age discount will only apply if the spouse is under age

17 4. ANNUITIES FOR EMPLOYEES A. Age and Service Requirements for Employee Annuities An annuity is paid in equal monthly installments with the first payment generally due on the first day of the calendar month following the date of withdrawal. The age and service requirements for annuity are as follows: Money Purchase Annuity 10 years of service, payable no earlier than age 55; Any service and withdrawal on or after the attainment of age 60; Minimum Formula Annuity 30 years of service, payable no earlier than age 50; 20 years of service, payable no earlier than age 55; 10 years of service, payable no earlier than age 60; Minimum Annuity - $850 per month 10 years of service and withdrawal on or after the attainment of age 60. If an employee withdraws from service with the service credit required for a money purchase annuity or a minimum formula annuity but before reaching the age required for the annuity to become payable, he or she may let the contributions remain in the Fund and receive an annuity beginning upon application for such annuity after he or she has attained the required age. (Please note that the employee must be at least age 60 at withdrawal from service to be eligible for the minimum annuity.) In the event withdrawal from service occurs prior to attainment of the age required for benefits to become payable and the employee wishes to receive an annuity, it is of the utmost importance that he or she file an application for such benefit upon attainment of the required age for eligibility. Annuity rights will not begin until such application is filed. Employees with at least 10 years of service who have attained age 55 at the time they withdraw from service must accept an annuity if not eligible for a refund of their accumulated annuity contributions. If the annuity of such employee is less than $800 a month, the employee may elect to 15

18 receive a refund of his or her accumulated annuity contributions in lieu of the annuity. If the total credits for an employee provide an annuity of less than $100 a month, an annuity for a period of time at $100 a month is payable. B. Methods for Determining Employee Annuities Outlined below are three different methods, which are used to determine the amount of an employee s annuity. The employee is entitled to the largest benefit. (1) Money Purchase Method - Based on Accumulated Salary Deductions and City Contributions This method uses the total amount accumulated from deductions from salary and City contributions for the employee s annuity, together with interest to date of withdrawal from service, to provide an annuity for life determined in accordance with insurance principles. It is commonly known as the money purchase method. The amount of annuity, which an employee may receive, will therefore depend on age at retirement, years of service, and salary earnings throughout his or her period of service. The maximum annual annuity is an amount equal to 60% of the highest annual salary earned. As previously noted, employees now have deducted from their salaries for their own annuities 6.5% each pay period. The City then contributes an amount equal to 6% of their salaries. Interest is added to these amounts from the end of the month in which the deductions were made and is compounded annually. In addition to this 6.5% of salary, employees contribute an additional.5% of salary for their share of the cost of the 3% automatic increase in their annuities after retirement, as described elsewhere in this booklet. When an employee retires, if he or she then has the required number of years of service, the total amount 16

19 to his or her credit is used to purchase an annuity for him or her computed according to the Combined Annuity Mortality Table at 3% interest. If an employee retires under age 60 with less than 20 years of service, the amount of City contributions is reduced by 10% for each year of service under 20 years in determining accumulated credits at retirement. The annuity payments begin no earlier than age 55. If retirement is due to expiration of ordinary disability credit, full City contributions are used to determine the annuity. The annuity payments begin after the last disability payment regardless of age. It will probably be necessary for the employee to contact the office to ascertain the money purchase annuity benefit. (2) Minimum Formula Annuity Method An employee will be entitled to a minimum formula annuity if he or she withdraws from service with at least 30 years of service credit (payable no earlier than age 50); with at least 20 years of service credit (payable no earlier than age 55);or with at least 10 years of service credit (payable no earlier than age 60). In computing the length of service under a minimum formula annuity method of computation, the equivalent of one full month of service in a calendar year equals one-half year of service credit, and service in five additional months constitutes one full year of credit. Example: If you began working on December 1, 1974 and worked continuously until June 30, 2003, you would be credited with 29.5 years of service credit. You would receive a ½ year credit for 1974, 28 years for the period from January 1, 1975 through December 31, 2002 and 1 year for

20 A minimum formula annuity is computed as follows: a) Determine the final average salary the highest average monthly salary for any four consecutive years within the last ten years of service immediately preceding the date of retirement. In computing the average salary, the actual salary earned exclusive of overtime or extra salary is used. The salary for Board of Education employees who have the Board of Education pay 7% of their salary for pension contributions is the straight time pay plus 7%. The normal salary base is for a 12 month per year, 5 day work week of 8 hours a day and 40 hours a week with straight time rate of compensation. The normal salary base may be adjusted according to a position s normal and established work period. The annual wage for any year is the greater of (1) such monthly, weekly, daily or hourly rate that was applicable for the greater number of months, weeks, days or hours in the year under consideration, or (2) the average of such monthly, weekly, daily, or hourly salary or wage rate as was applicable for the total number of months, weeks, days, or hours, respectively in each year under consideration. Example Annual Salary Final year... $ 46,000 One year earlier... 44,000 Two years earlier... 41,000 Three years earlier... 37,000 Total... $ 168,000 Divide by 48 for average monthly salary.. $ 3,500 18

21 b) Determine the percentage of final average salary based on length of service. The total number of years of service is multiplied by 2.4% and then by the average monthly salary. The maximum annuity is 80% of the highest average monthly salary. Example: 23 Years of Service 23 years x 2.4% = 55.2% c) Determine the age discount if retirement is earlier than age 60 with less than 25 years of service. There is no reduction in the percentage of final average salary for retirement on or after age 60. For retirement before age 60 there is a discount for every month or fraction thereof that the employee is under age 60. Age at Retirement Age Discount.25%/Month Under 60 if Less than 25 Years of Service % % % % % % 19

22 d) Multiply the percentage of final average salary by the difference between 100% and the age discount determined in (c), so, for example, at age 55 using the age discount (15%), the annuity is 100% minus 15%, or 85% of the unreduced annuity. Example: 23 Years of Service Age at Retirement % From Service x Discount Factor % x (100%) = 55.20% % x (100-3%) = 53.54% % x (100-6%) = 51.89% % x (100-9%) = 50.23% % x (100-12%) = 48.58% % x (100-15%) = 46.92% e) Multiply the average monthly salary by the percentage determined in (d) to determine the monthly pension. Using the same average salary of $3,500, the amount of annuity would be: Example: 23 Years of Service With Average Monthly Salary of $3, Age at Retirement 60 $3,500 x.5520 = $1, $3,500 x.5354 = $1, $3,500 x.5189 = $1, $3,500 x.5023 = $1, $3,500 x.4858 = $1, $3,500 x.4692 = $1, The factors combining the age discount with the percentage based on length of service can be found in Table 1. The total percentage cannot exceed 80%. 20

23 (3) Minimum Annuity Method Beginning January 1, 1999, an employee withdrawing from service at age 60 or over, with at least 10 years of Municipal service will receive a minimum annuity of $850 per month for life. Beginning January 1, 1999, the minimum amount of annuity for an employee annuitant in receipt of annuity on August 14, 1998, is $850 per month for life for an annuitant receiving a life or a term annuity. For reciprocal annuities, the employee must have at least 5 years of Municipal service credit. 21

24 C. TABLE 1 Table Showing Percentage of Salary Payable Under the Minimum 10 Year Service Formula Annuity (See information with respect to calculation of final average salary) Years Age Age Age Age Age Age of Years 55 Years 56 Years 56 Years 57 Years Service Years 6 Months 6 Months % 41.52% 42.24% 42.96% 43.68% % * 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* * 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* *80% is the Maximum 22

25 C. TABLE 1 Table Showing Percentage of Salary Payable Under the Minimum 10 Year Service Formula Annuity (See information with respect to calculation of final average salary) Years Age Age Age Age Age Age of 57 Years 58 Years 58 Years 59 Years 59 Years 60 Years Service 6 Months 6 Months 6 Months or Over % % 45.12% 45.84% 46.56% 47.28% * 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* * 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* 80.00* *80% is the Maximum 23

26 D. Annuity Increases After Retirement Any employee participant who retires on annuity on or after the attainment of age 60, except one who receives only a term annuity, is entitled to automatic annual increases equal to 3% of the currently payable monthly annuity. The first such increase is given on the first annuity payment date following the first anniversary of retirement on annuity. Example: The employee retires June 30, 1999, with an annuity of $2,000 a month. In July, 2000 the monthly annuity would be increased by $60; in July, 2001 by $61.80 (.03 x $2,060.00), with these increases continuing each July thereafter. Eligible employees who retire on annuity prior to the age of 60 years receive such increases beginning at the later of the first payment date after the third anniversary of retirement and age 53 if this is earlier than the first annuity payment date following the attainment of age 60; otherwise, the increases begin on the first annuity payment date following the later of the attainment of age 60 and the first anniversary of retirement. These increases are financed by the.5% added contributions from the salaries of employees and by contributions from the City. These automatic increases do not apply to survivor annuitants or reversionary annuitants. Employees not entitled to these increases or who resign and take a refund receive a refund of the.5% deducted. No interest is paid on this.5% deduction when refunded. E. Reversionary Annuity A reversionary annuity is a reduction of employee s annuity to provide a life annuity for a spouse, parent, child, brother or sister. Under certain conditions an employee may elect to reduce his or her retirement annuity to provide a life annuity with the value of the amount by which his or her annuity is reduced, to begin upon the employee s death, for a spouse, parent, child, brother or sister. 24

27 An employee must make this election to reduce his or her annuity at or prior to retirement on annuity. This election to reduce an annuity may be made by the employee at any time prior to the date of retirement, or at the time of retirement, by filing a written designation with the Retirement Board indicating the amount by which he or she wishes to reduce the annuity and the person to whom the reversionary annuity is payable, in the event such designated person should outlive the employee. The amount of reduction may be decided at a later date than the intent to reduce as long as the amount is decided at or before retirement. The written designation can be revoked or canceled as follows: (1) by a written request by the employee at any time prior to retirement on annuity; (2) upon the death of the employee prior to retirement on annuity; (3) upon the death of the designated person prior to the employee s retirement on annuity; or (4) upon the death of the employee before the expiration of one year (365 days) from the date the written designation was filed with the Retirement Board for a reversionary annuity for a parent, child, brother, or sister, even though the employee has retired and received the reduced annuity for any part of such one year period. If the designated person dies prior to the employee but while the employee is retired and receiving the reduced retirement annuity, the employee s full retirement annuity before reduction will be restored beginning on the date of the designated person s death and paid for the balance of the retired employee s lifetime. There is no retroactive payment of the full annuity; that is, of the difference between the full and reduced annuity. The annuity to the designated person will begin the day after the day of death of the employee and will continue to be paid monthly thereafter until the death of the designated 25

28 person. Reversionary annuities are paid on the first of the month with the first payment on the first day of the calendar month following the date of death of the annuitant. The amount by which an employee may reduce the retirement annuity is subject to the following limitations: (1) Employees may reduce the retirement annuity by an amount up to a maximum of $400 a month; (2) The amount of monthly annuity to the designated person may not be less than $50 a month; and (3) The amount of monthly annuity to a designated spouse plus the amount of spouse s annuity provided under the other provisions of law governing the operation of the Fund may not exceed an amount equal to the reduced annuity payable to the employee. The employee annuitant s 3% yearly increase after retirement is based on the unreduced retirement annuity of the employee at retirement. The reversionary annuitant does not receive automatic annual increases. The amount of the monthly reversionary annuity is determined by multiplying the amount of the monthly reduction in the employee s annuity by a factor shown in the following table. The factor is based on: (a) the age of the employee on the date of retirement; and (b) the difference between the age of the employee and the age of the reversionary annuitant as of the retirement date of the employee. 26

29 Table 2 For Every $1 Reduction in Employee s Retirement Annuity a Reversionary Annuitant for the Ages Stated Would Be Entitled to the Amounts Shown: Reversionary Annuitant s Age Employee s Age Years Younger 30 or more Years Older or more For example, if an employee age 65 on the date of retirement has designated a reversionary annuitant who was four years younger on the same date, for every $1 reduction in retirement annuity, the reversionary annuity would be $2.61, subject to limitations discussed herein. (In determining ages, months are disregarded.) A $100 reduction by the employee would give the reversionary annuitant an amount of $261. It is suggested that if any employee is interested in providing for an annuity for a designated person in accordance with the provisions of the Act discussed above, the employee make written inquiry, including a statement as to age of the designated person, to the Retirement Board. The Board will be glad to give information in reference to the different possibilities available and also will furnish the employee with a form for filing with the Retirement Board. Any interested employee should exercise this option as soon as possible. This option may be revoked by the employee at any time prior to retirement. 27

30 5. SURVIVING SPOUSE ANNUITIES A. Age and Service Requirements for Spouse Annuities A spouse s annuity is paid in equal monthly payments for life or a period of time. A spouse s monthly annuity always begins upon the death of the employee. The spouse will receive his or her first annuity payment on the first of the month following the date of the employee s death. The last monthly payment will be on the first day of the month of the spouse s death or termination of temporary annuity. The following surviving spouses are entitled to a spouse s annuity for ordinary death: (1) the spouse of an employee whose death occurs while in service; (2) the spouse of an employee whose death occurs after retirement on annuity, if marriage occurred while the employee was still in service; (3) the spouse of an employee whose death occurs after withdrawal from service, having at least ten years of service credit, if marriage occurred while the employee was still in service, provided that the employee did not take a refund of his or her contributions to the Fund. Surviving spouses are entitled to a spouse s annuity for duty death when the death results from an injury incurred in the performance of an act of duty. If the total credits for spouse s annuity provide an annuity for life of less than $100 a month, an annuity for a period of time at $100 a month is payable. The maximum amount of annuity the spouse can receive for an ordinary death is 50% of the highest salary received by the employee, regardless of the method of computation. B. Methods for Determining Spouse Annuities These are the three basic methods used to determine the amount of a spouse s annuity for an ordinary death. The spouse is entitled to the largest benefit, subject to the 50% of highest salary maximum. 28

31 (1) Money Purchase Annuity - Based on Accumulated Salary Deductions and City Contributions This method of computing the spouse s annuity is known as the money purchase method. That is, the accumulated salary deductions and City contributions with interest to the credit of the spouse are used to provide the spouse s annuity. Each employee now has 1.5% deducted from his or her salary for the purpose of providing an annuity for his or her spouse. The City then contributes an amount equal to 2% of salary. To these amounts interest is added and compounded annually. Such salary deductions and City contributions continue while the employee is in service until the employee s retirement from service. The amount of spouse s annuity, just as in the case of the employee s own annuity, is determined by the period of service of the employee, employee s salary, and employee s and spouse s ages with the same reduction in City contributions if retirement or death out of service occurs before age 60 with less than 20 years of service. The City contributions are not reduced for death in service. If the employee dies in service, the spouse s annuity will be based on the entire sum existing to the employee s credit for employee annuity and spouse annuity in the Fund at the time of his or her death. If the employee should die while receiving annuity, the spouse s annuity is based on the sums existing to the spouse s credit in the Fund on the date of the employee s retirement on annuity. The sums to the spouse s credit are used to provide an annuity, such annuity being deferred into the future and to begin upon the date of death of the employee. The mortality tables and interest credits used in these computations would be similar to those used in the computations for the employee s annuity and are specified in the Act. (2) Minimum Formula Annuity Method A minimum formula annuity is provided for the spouse of an employee who dies in service or retires 29

32 from service after his or her attainment of age 55 with at least 20 years of service or attainment of age 50 with at least 30 years of service. The amount of such minimum spouse s annuity is equal to 50% of the annuity the employee would have been entitled to had he or she retired from service on the day preceding the day of his or her death or equal to 50% of the annuity the employee was receiving on the date of his or her death provided that his or her spouse on such date is age 55 or older. If the spouse is under age 55 on the date of such computation, the minimum annuity will be equal to 50% of the employee s annuity computed as stated, but discounted.25% for each month that the spouse is less than age 55 if the employee had less than 25 years of service or age 50 if the employee had at least 25 years of service and the employee withdrew on or after June 27, Spouse Discount Years under.25% per Month Required Age Spouse Under Required Age 0 0% 1 3% 2 6% 3 9% 4 12% 5 15% If the spouse is age 55 (if the employee had less than 25 years of service) or age 50 (if the employee had at least 25 years of service) there is no age discount. If the spouse is age 50 and is to be discounted for her age under 55, the formula would provide for a 15% discount; therefore, the annuity would be 100% - 15%, or 85% of the otherwise unreduced annuity. Example: An employee dies in service July 1, 2002, at age 62 with 24 years of service and a final average monthly salary of $3,500. The annuity would be calculated as follows: Employee Annuity: $3,500 x.5760 = $2, Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 58: 50% x $2, x 100% = $1, Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 53: 50% x $2, x (100-6)% = $ Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 50: 50% x $2, x (100-15)% = $

33 Example: An employee retires June 30, 2002, at age 62 with 24 years of service and a final average monthly salary of $3,500. The annuity would be calculated as follows: Employee Annuity: $3,500 x.5760 = $2, The spouse s annuity would be based on one half of the annuity the employee was receiving on the date of death. This includes the 3% post-retirement increases the employee would receive July 1, 2003, and each July 1 thereafter. If the spouse is under age 55 on the date of employee s death, the minimum annuity will be equal to 50% of the employee s annuity computed as stated, but discounted.25% for each month that the spouse is less than age 55 at the employee s death. If the employee were to die on December 31, 2004, the spouse annuity under the minimum formula annuity method would be calculated as follows: Employee Annuity as of: July 1, 2002 $2, July 1, 2003 $2, July 1, 2004 $2, December 31, 2004 $2, Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 58: 50% x $2, x 100% = $1, Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 53: 50% x $2, x (100-6)% = $1, Spouse Annuity, Spouse Age 50: 50% x $2, x (100-15)% = $ The spouse s minimum formula annuity method discussed herein provides one calculation of a spouse s annuity. Keep in mind that the spouse is entitled to the greatest annuity provided by the statute. Regardless of the method used for computing the employee s annuity, if a deceased employee is receiving a retirement annuity at the time of his or her death, the spouse may elect to receive, in lieu of any other annuity, 50% of the deceased employee s retirement annuity at the time of death reduced by.25% for each month that the spouse s age on the date of death is less than 55 (if the employee had less than 31

34 25 years of service) or age 50 ( if the employee had at least 25 years of service and withdrew on or after June 27, 1997). If there has been any refund of excess spouse deductions, it must be repaid for the spouse to receive this annuity. If an employee dies in service with at least 10 years of service, the annuity would be no less than 50% of the minimum formula annuity the employee would have been entitled to based on service and salary to the date of death without regard to age eligibility requirements. The employee s annuity would be equal to 2.4% of final average salary for each year of service to a maximum of 80%. There would be no age discount for the employee or spouse. This benefit is only for an employee who has been married to his/ her spouse for at least 10 years on the date of death. Example: An employee dies in service August 31, 2002, at age 48 with 28 years of service and a final average monthly salary of $3,500. The annuity would be calculated as follows: Employee Annuity: $3,500 x.672 = $2, Spouse Annuity: $2,352 x.50 = $1, (3) Minimum Annuities for Spouses Beginning January 1, 1999, if the employee dies in service, the spouse s minimum annuity will be $800 per month for life, provided the employee had at least 5 years of Municipal service. The spouse of any employee with at least 10 years of Municipal service who dies after retirement on annuity, will receive a minimum annuity of $800 per month for life beginning upon the employee s death but no earlier than January 1, Beginning January 1, 1999, the minimum amount of annuity for spouse annuitants in receipt of annuity on August 14, 1998, is $800 per month for life for those spouse annuitants receiving a life or term annuity, regardless of years of service, or in the case of a reciprocal annuity if the employee had at least 5 years of Municipal service. 32

35 Maximum Annuities For Spouses (continued) The maximum spouse s annuity provided by the money purchase method, the minimum formula annuity method, or the minimum annuity method cannot exceed an amount equal to 50% of the highest salary earned by the employee. C. Duty Death - Spouse Annuity The maximum surviving spouse s annuity in the event of an employee s duty death is an amount equal to 60% of the employee s highest salary, to be paid to the surviving spouse until the date upon which the employee would have attained the age of 65. After such date the surviving spouse would receive an annuity equal in amount to that which would have been provided for the spouse by the employee had the employee lived and continued in service until attainment of age 65 at the salary on the date of death. However, if the spouse receives any award or compensation from the Industrial Commission as a result of the employee s duty death, the amount so received is deducted from the amount of the surviving spouse s annuity. D. Spouses Not Entitled to Annuity The following spouses are not entitled to a surviving spouse s annuity: (1) The spouse of an employee who withdraws and dies while out of service if the employee and spouse were not married while employee was in service; (2) The spouse of an employee with ten or more years of service who dies while out of service and who has received a refund of contributions for annuity purposes; (3) The spouse of an employee with less than ten years of service who dies out of service while not eligible for an employee annuity; (4) The former spouse of an employee whose judgment of dissolution (formerly known as a divorce decree) of marriage has been vacated or set aside after the employee s death, unless the proceedings to vacate or set aside the judgment were filed in court within five years after the entry thereof and within one year after the employee s death, and unless the board is made a party defendant to such proceedings. 33

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