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CalPERS Retirement Benefits

CalPERS offers a "defined benefit" plan which provides benefits that are calculated using a "defined formula," rather than contributions and earnings to a savings plan. Retirement benefits are calculated using a member's years of service credit, age at retirement, and final compensation (average salary for a defined period of employment). There are a variety of retirement formulas that are determined by the member's employer (State, school, or local public agency); occupation (miscellaneous (general office and others), safety, industrial, or peace officer/firefighter); and the specific provisions in the contract between CalPERS and the employer.

There are three types of retirement offered:

  • Service retirement or "normal" retirement
  • Disability retirement for members who can no longer perform their jobs due to illness or injury
  • Industrial disability retirement for safety members, or those members whose employer has contracted for industrial disability benefits, whose job-related injuries or illnesses resulted in disability, making them unable to continue working.

CalPERS also provides death benefits for active and retired members paid to eligible beneficiaries or survivors.

In addition to these programs, CalPERS also administers retirement benefits for the Legislators' Retirement SystemJudges' Retirement System, and Judges' Retirement System II.

You can find more detailed information on benefits in the For Members or For Employers area of CalPERS On-Line.

Dated: 04-25-2008

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