Service Credit & Contributions

Your pension is based on four factors: tier of membership; total service credit; age at retirement; and final average salary.

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It is important to have all the credit for which you are eligible because your total service credit impacts your eligibility for NYSTRS benefits — and often the amount of those benefits. The following types of service can build your credit and help you reach important service milestones. Read more below and in our publication You Deserve the Credit.

Member Contributions

Members are required by law to contribute a percentage of salary, which helps fund their pension.

  • Tier 6 members are required to contribute a variable contribution rate, which is determined by their pensionable earnings, throughout their active membership. Read Contribution Rate Information for Tier 6 Members to learn how the rate is determined.
  • Tier 5 members are required by law to contribute 3.5% of their salary throughout their active membership.
  • Tier 3 and 4 members were required to contribute 3% of their salary until they had either 10 years of membership or were credited with 10 years of service, whichever occurred first.

See the Active Members’ Handbook to read more about contributions and credit.