|Serving New York Educators Since 1921|
If you stop teaching for any reason prior to retirement, rest assured your NYSTRS membership — and thus your potential eligibility for a NYSTRS pension — does not come to a screeching halt.
Following are some important facts about your NYSTRS membership.
Active vs. Inactive. Your System membership will remain active if you are vested (five years of service for Tier 1-4 members, 10 years for Tier 5 and 6 members) or if you work the equivalent of 20 or more full-time days in a school year at least once every seven years in a position reportable to NYSTRS. If you do not meet either of these requirements, your membership will automatically cease.
Ceasing Membership. If you are a Tier 3-6 member, you generally may withdraw your contributions with interest and cease your membership only if you have less than 10 years of service credit. Important Note: Before withdrawing your membership or letting it cease, contact NYSTRS to discuss the effect of withdrawal on your benefit eligibility and your rights to transfer to another retirement system.
Reinstatement. If you return to NYS public employment after your membership ceases, you can reinstate to your original membership date by repaying the amount you were refunded plus interest.
Part-Time Work. You can still accrue service credit even if you work part time or teach only occasionally. The number of days of credit earned in a school year is the actual number of paid work or paid leave days (or parts thereof) reported to NYSTRS by your employer. To receive credit for part-time, partial-year or substitute teaching, you must have worked the equivalent of at least 20 full days in a July 1 — June 30 school year.
Remember Your Loans. If you borrowed from your NYSTRS contributions and leave employment with a participating employer, you are still responsible for making any remaining payments on the loan. Contact our Loan Unit at (800) 348-7298, Ext. 6080 for details. If you default on a loan, the outstanding balance continues to accrue interest and the unpaid portion will negatively impact any future NYSTRS benefit for which you may be eligible.
Review Your Beneficiary. Even if you are not working for a NYSTRS participating employer, if your membership is active your beneficiary may be entitled to a death benefit or a refund of your membership contributions plus interest. Be sure to update your beneficiary information as needed.
If you have additional questions or concerns, talk with an information representative by calling (800) 348-7298, Ext. 6250.