Employers' Pensions and Benefits Administration Manual (EPBAM)
   

 

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Retirement
State Police Retirement System



Table of Contents
 
 
 

Mandatory Retirement

 

Service Retirement

 

Special Retirement

 

Deferred Retirement

 

Ordinary Disability Retirement

 

Accidental Disability Retirement

Survivor Retirement Benefits

 

Accidental Death

 

Death After Retirement

 
  Death in the Course of Volunteer Service (Volunteer Emergency Workers)

Included in the following tables are the "types" of retirement and their eligibility requirements, as offered under the State Police Retirement System (SPRS).

The required forms and procedures for each type are also outlined.  If you wish to view the forms, click on their titles and a sample form will appear in your browser.  Also, instructions for completing the forms can be obtained by clicking on the line you need help with.  

As a general rule, three to four months advance filing will facilitate processing of a SPRS member's retirement in a timely manner.  Please do not delay in completing the employer tasks once you become aware that a member will retire.

SPRS Membership Tiers

Please note that effective May 21, 2011, SPRS members are now classified by enrollment date, as eligibility requirements for SPRS enrollment and retirement are now different for three distinct enrollment periods, according to the law. The “membership tiers” by enrollment date are:

  • Tier 1 Membership, for members who were enrolled on or before May 21, 2010.
  • Tier 2 Membership, for members who were eligible to enroll between May 21, 2010 and June 28, 2011.
  • Tier 3 Membership, for members who are eligible to enroll after June 28, 2011.

Final Compensation — Tier 1

For a SPRS Tier 1 member enrolled on or before May 21, 2010, Final Compensation means the salary upon which pension contributions were based in the last 12 months of creditable service preceding retirement.

Final Compensation — Tier 2 and Tier 3

For a SPRS Tier 2 and Tier 3 member enrolled after May 21, 2010, Final Compensation means the average salary upon which pension contributions were based for any three fiscal years (July-June) of membership preceding retirement that provide the largest possible benefit.

Retirement allowance formulas for SPRS Service, Special, and Deferred Retirements are the same for Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 members, but Final Compensation calculations are different, according to the above definitions.

For all SPRS members, Final Compensation includes maintenance allowance value for the same period.

Service under Other Pension Systems

Only service as a member of the SPRS may be used to satisfy the minimum creditable service requirements for the available SPRS retirement types below.

Service from other New Jersey State-administered retirement systems cannot be used to satisfy the minimum creditable service requirements for the SPRS retirement types.

Such service may, however, be applied to a member's retirement allowance as an additional one percent of Final Compensation per year of service, up to the limits specified or to meet the 25-year requirement for State-paid health benefits coverage.

Mandatory Retirement
Eligibility The mandatory retirement age for all members of the SPRS is 55.  If a member does not file a retirement application before the mandatory retirement date, the member is automatically retired on that date.  
Benefit Benefits are not payable until after an application is on file at the Division of Pensions and Benefits. 

Benefits will be calculated depending upon the type of retirement for which the member qualifies (see below).

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Service Retirement

Eligibility

Benefit Calculation

At any age with 20 or more years of service credit.

50% of Final Compensation.*

At age 55 (mandatory retirement), with any amount of service credit, if enrolled on or before August 30, 1985.

50% of Final Compensation.*

*Tier 1 Final Compensation: For Tier 1 SPRS members, Final Compensation means the salary earned for creditable service on which pension contributions were based for the last 12 months before retirement.

Tier 2 and Tier 3 Final Compensation: For SPRS Tier 2 or Tier 3 members (enrollment after May 21, 2010), Final Compensation means the average salary upon which pension contributions were based for any three fiscal years (July-June) of membership preceding retirement that provides the largest possible benefit.

NOTE: Former membership earned under another State-administered retirement system, such as the PERS, TPAF, or PFRS, may be purchased or transferred for credit in the SPRS, but the service time purchased may not be used to qualify for a SPRS Service Retirement.

Former membership service under another State-administered retirement system (PERS, TPAF, or PFRS) that is purchased or transferred for credit in the SPRS will be used in the computation of a retirement allowance on the basis of 1% of final compensation* for each year of such service credit.

   

Member Responsibilities

  1. Submit a SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance prior to retirement date.

    Instructions for completing the SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance.

  2. Submit proof of age for member;
  3. Submit proof of age for beneficiary; *
  4. Submit photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007, or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners*

* Required to process death benefit after retirement.

Employer Responsibilities
  1. Submit a Certification of Service and Final Salary for member to the Division of Pensions and Benefits.

    Instructions for completing a Certification of Service and Final Salary

  2. Submit copies of indictments, convictions and/or preliminary and final notices of disciplinary action, if Question #6 is answered "yes"

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Special Retirement

Eligibility

At any age with 25 or more years of SPRS service credit.

Benefit Calculation* 65 percent of Final Compensation*, plus
1 percent of Final Compensation* per year over 25 years (up to 30 years)

Benefit not to exceed 70%

*Tier 1 Final Compensation: For Tier 1 SPRS members, Final Compensation means the salary earned for creditable service on which pension contributions were based for the last 12 months before retirement.

Tier 2 and Tier 3 Final Compensation: For SPRS Tier 2 or Tier 3 members (enrollment after May 21, 2010), Final Compensation means the average salary upon which pension contributions were based for any three fiscal years (July-June) of membership preceding retirement that provides the largest possible benefit.

Member Responsibilities

  1. Submit a SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance for SPRS prior to retirement date.
  2. Instructions for completing the SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance
  3. Submit proof of age for member
  4. Submit proof of age for beneficiary *
  5. Submit photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007, or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners*

* Required to process death benefit after retirement.

Employer Responsibilities

  1. Submit a Certification of Service and Final Salary for member to the Division of Pensions and Benefits.

    Instructions for completing the Certification of Service and Final Salary

  2. Submit copies of indictments, convictions and/or preliminary and final notices of disciplinary action,if Question #6 is answered "yes".

NOTE: Former membership earned under another State-administered retirement system, such as the PERS, TPAF, or PFRS, may be purchased or transferred for credit in the SPRS, but that service time may not be used to qualify for a SPRS Special Retirement.

*Former membership service under another State-administered retirement system (PERS, TPAF, or PFRS) that is purchased or transferred for credit in the SPRS will be used in the computation of a retirement allowance on the basis of 1% of final compensation for each year of such service credit.


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Deferred Retirement

Eligibility

  • At any age under age 55 with 10 or more years of service credit.
  • Retirement becomes effective the first of the month after turning age 55.
Benefit Calculation

2 percent of Final Compensation* per year of service credit, up to 25 years of service.

Prior to turning age 55, the member may cancel the retirement and withdraw the contributions, or return to work and reactivate the account.

*Tier 1 Final Compensation: For Tier 1 SPRS members, Final Compensation means the salary earned for creditable service on which pension contributions were based for the last 12 months before retirement.

Tier 2 and Tier 3 Final Compensation: For SPRS Tier 2 or Tier 3 members (enrollment after May 21, 2010), Final Compensation means the average salary upon which pension contributions were based for any three fiscal years (July-June) of membership preceding retirement that provides the largest possible benefit.

If death occurs between date of resignation and the effective date of retirement, only the return of member contributions is payable to the named beneficiary.
Member Responsibilities
  1. Submit a SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance for SPRS prior to retirement date.

    Instructions for completing the SPRS Application for Retirement Allowance

  2. Submit proof of age for member

  3. Submit proof of age for beneficiary *
  4. Submit photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007, or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners*

* Required to process death benefit after retirement.

Employer Responsibilities:
  1. Submit a "Certification of Service and Final Salary" for member to the Division of Pensions and Benefits.

    Instructions for completing the "Certification of Service and Final Salary"

  2. Copies of indictments, convictions and/or preliminary and final notices of disciplinary action - if Question #6 is answered "yes"


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Disability Retirements

Ordinary Disability Retirement

Eligibility

Member must be "in service", and have at least four years of creditable service, and is considered totally and permanently disabled from their job duties and any other duty made available by the Superintendent of the State Police.

Please Note: A "member in service" means that the member or the employer was making pension contributions to the retirement system at the time of filing the application for a disability retirement allowance. It may also mean that the member was on an approved leave of absence, paid or unpaid, or suspension, paid or unpaid, at the time of filing the application for a disability retirement allowance, and it has not been more than the time frames permitted by N.J.S.A. 43:16A-9(5)a for active membership since the member's last contribution to the retirement system. If the member had pending litigation for wrongful termination filed against the employer, the member has 30 days from the date the litigation is resolved to file for disability retirement in order to be considered a "member in service".

Benefit Calculation

40% of Final Compensation

OR

1.5 percent of Final Compensation for each year of service

WHICHEVER IS HIGHER

Member Responsibilities

  1. Submit a SPRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance prior to retirement date (except for Involuntary Disability Retirement).

    Instructions for completing the SPRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance

  2. Submit proof of age for member;

  3. Submit proof of age for beneficiary;*

  4. Submit photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007, or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners*
  5. Have medical providers complete Medical Examination by Personal or Treating Physician forms (as many as necessary).

    View Instructions for completing Medical Examination by Personal or Treating Physician 

  6. Secure medical records through Authorization for Release of Medical Records.

  7. View Instructions for completing Authorization for Release of Medical Records.

* Required to process death benefit after retirement.

Please note: Once the SPRS Board of Trustees grants approval for a disability retirement, the member may only cancel the retirement by submitting a letter requesting to do so to the Board of Trustees, with a written statement from his/her physician expressing that the member can return to work. The Disability Review Section would then send the member for an IME, and all medical information would be again submitted to the Medical Review Board. Once all of the above information is received, the Board of Trustees would make a determination of whether member is able to return to work or not.

Employer Responsibilities

  1. Submit a SPRS Application for Disability Retirement on the employee's behalf.

  2. Complete Employer Certification for Disability Retirement as soon as possible upon learning of member's retirement and submit to the Division of Pensions and Benefits.

    View Instructions for completing the Employer Certification for Disability Retirement.

  3. Copies of indictments, convictions and/or preliminary and final notices of disciplinary action, if Question #6 is answered "yes".

  4. Enclose a letter addressed to the Division of Pensions and Benefits stating that, in the employing authority's opinion, the member is "totally and permanently disabled" from fulfilling his or her job duties. The employer must submit attendance records, along with any pertinent medical records.
    Sample Letter


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Accidental Disability Retirement

Eligibility

  1. Member must be enrolled at time of accident (no minimum years of service credit), and;
  2. Be a member "in service" at the time the application is filed at the Division of Pensions and Benefits, and;
  3. Be considered totally and permanently disabled from his or her job duties as a direct result of a traumatic event occurring during and a result of regular of assigned duties, but not as a result of willful negligence, and;
  4. Must be disabled for the performance of any other duty made available by the Superintendent of the State Police, and;
  5. Application must be on file within five years of the accident.

Please Note: A "member in service" means that the member or the employer was making pension contributions to the retirement system at the time of filing the application for a disability retirement allowance. It may also mean that the member was on an approved leave of absence, paid or unpaid, or suspension, paid or unpaid, at the time of filing the application for a disability retirement allowance, and it has not been more than the time frames permitted by N.J.S.A. 43:16A-9(5)a for active membership since the member's last contribution to the retirement system. If the member had pending litigation for wrongful termination filed against the employer, the member has 30 days from the date the litigation is resolved to file for disability retirement in order to be considered a "member in service".

Benefit Calculation 2/3 of salary at the time of the "traumatic event" or at time of retirement, whichever is higher.

Member Responsibilities

  1. Complete and submit a SPRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance prior to retirement date.

    Instructions for completing the SPRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance.

  2. Submit proof of age for member;
  3. Submit proof of age for beneficiary;*
  4. Submit photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007, or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners*
  5. Have medical providers complete Medical Examination by Personal or Treating Physician forms (as many as necessary); 

    (View Instructions
    for completing the Medical Examination by Personal or Treating Physician.)

  6. Secure medical records through Authorization for Release of Medical Records;

    (View Instructions for completing the Authorization for Release of Medical Records.)

* Required to process death benefit after retirement.

Please note: Once the SPRS Board of Trustees grants approval for a disability retirement, the member may only cancel the retirement by submitting a letter requesting to do so to the Board of Trustees, with a written statement from his/her physician expressing that the member can return to work. The Disability Review Section would then send the member for an IME, and all medical information would be again submitted to the Medical Review Board. Once all of the above information is received, the Board of Trustees would make a determination of whether member is able to return to work or not.

Employer Responsibilities

  1. Complete Employer Certification for Disability Retirement as soon as possible upon learning of member's retirement and submit to the Division of Pensions and Benefits. 

    (View Instructions
    for completing the Employer Certification for Disability Retirement.)

  2. Submit copies of indictments, convictions and/or preliminary and final notices of disciplinary action, if Question #5 is answered "yes".
  3. Submit copies of accident reports, incident reports, witness statements, medical records relating to the incident, and other related documents.
  4. Submit copies of Workers' Compensation awards.

 

Involuntary Disability Retirement
Eligibility
  1. Four or more years of New Jersey service credit (out-of-state, U.S. Government and Military purchases cannot be used to attain the four years)*, and

  2. Subject to Involuntary Ordinary Disability Retirement

* The Involuntary Disability Retirement Allowance calculation for members with four or more years of service credit but less than twenty years of service credit is different from that used for members with twenty or more years of service credit. Please see Benefit below.

  1. Member is considered totally and permanently disabled from their job duties and any other duty made available by the Superintendent of the State Police, and
  2. Member is required to retire upon application by the State.
Benefit

For members having four or more but less than twenty years of service credit, the calculation is the same as the regular Ordinary Disability Retirement calculation:*

40% X Final Compensation* = Annual Maximum Pension (if approved).

For members with twenty or more years of service credit, the special "Involuntary Disability Retirement" calculation is:*

50% X Final Compensation* = Annual Maximum Pension, plus
3% for each year over 20 - up to a maximum of 65%
(if approved).

*Out-of-state, U.S. government, and military service purchases may not be used to qualify for an Involuntary Disability retirement or to qualify for the higher benefit for members with 20 or more years of service.

*Tier 1 Final Compensation: For Tier 1 SPRS members, Final Compensation means the salary earned for creditable service on which pension contributions were based for the last 12 months before retirement.

Tier 2 and Tier 3 Final Compensation: For SPRS Tier 2 and Tier 3 members (enrollment after May 21, 2010), Final Compensation means the average salary upon which pension contributions were based for any three fiscal years (July-June) of membership preceding retirement that provides the largest possible benefit.


 
Member Responsibilities

Supply proof of age document for member.

Supply proof of age document for spouse, civil union partner, or eligible same-sex domestic partner. *

Supply photocopy of: Marriage Certificate; OR Civil Union Certificate from NJ or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex civil unions; OR New Jersey Certificate of Domestic Partnership dated prior to February 19, 2007 or a valid certification from another jurisdiction that recognizes same-sex domestic partners.*

Have medical providers complete Medical Examination by Personal or Treating Physician forms (as many as necessary)

Secure medical records through Authorization for Release of Medical Records

*Required for Survivor's Pension to be paid upon retiree's death.

Please note: Once the PFRS Board of Trustees grants approval for a disability retirement, the member may only cancel the retirement by submitting a letter requesting to do so to the Board of Trustees, with a written statement from his/her physician expressing that the member can return to work. The Disability Review Section would then send the member for an IME, and all medical information would be again submitted to the Medical Review Board. Once all of the above information is received, the Board of Trustees would make a determination of whether member is able to return to work or not.

Also, when an employer submits a PFRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance for a member's Involuntary Disability Retirement, the member may not change the date of retirement indicated by the employer.

Employer Responsibilities
  1. Complete a PFRS Application for Disability Retirement Allowance on behalf of the member.

    Do not sign or designate beneficiaries for the member—the member will have opportunity to do that later. In place of the member's signature, write, "Involuntary Disability Retirement" and have the Certifying Officer sign.

    Instructions on completing the Disability Retirement Application.

  2. Complete Employer Certification for Disability Retirement as soon as possible upon learning of member's retirement. Write "Involuntary" on the top of the application.

    Instructions on completing the Disability Retirement Certification.

  3. Enclose a letter addressed to the Division of Pensions and Benefits stating that, in the employing authority's opinion, the member is "totally and permanently disabled" from fulfilling his or her job duties. The employer must submit attendance records, along with any pertinent medical records.
    Sample Letter


  4. Local employers must also submit a resolution, authorizing the employing location to process an Involuntary Disability Retirement Application.
    Sample Resolution


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Survivor's Pension Benefits

The calculation of SPRS survivor benefits, when such a benefit is available, and the amount of a death benefit to a beneficiary, now depends upon SPRS membership tier, or more specifically, the Final Compensation (or final salary) definition that applies to a member's SPRS membership tier.

SPRS "Accidental Death -- In Service"

If an active member dies as a result of an accident while in the performance of regular or assigned duties, not as a result of willful negligence, an "Accidental Death" Benefit is payable to eligible dependents.

Benefit: Group Life Insurance benefit of 3.5 X member's Final Compensation** to designated Beneficiary(ies);

PLUS:

Benefit to Surviving Spouse, Civil Union Partner, or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner*

70% X Final Compensation** = Annual Pension

To Surviving Children ** (If No Spouse, Civil Union Partner, or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner)

20% for one child, 35% for two, 50% for three or more children, until age 18

To Parents (If No Spouse, Civil Union Partner, or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner; OR No Children)

25% if one surviving parent; 40% if two surviving parents who are dependent upon the deceased.

* Spouse, Civil Union Partner, or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner:

Spouse: Member and spouse must be married as of the date of death to qualify for survivor benefits. Benefit to surviving spouse will continue even if the surviving spouse subsequently remarries after the member's death, for a surviving spouse's subsequent remarriage occurring on or after September 12, 2003. If the surviving spouse remarried before September 12, 2003, the survivor benefit ceases.

Civil Union Partner, Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner: Civil union or eligible same-sex domestic partnership between the member and the civil union partner, or member and eligible same-sex domestic partner, must be in effect as of the date of death to qualify for survivor benefits. Benefit to surviving civil union partner or eligible same-sex domestic partner will continue even if the surviving civil union partner or eligible same-sex domestic partner subsequently remarries or enters into a civil union after the member's death.

** Children: Children means a deceased active or retired member's unmarried children (1) under the age of 18, or (2) of any age who, at the time of the member's death, are disabled because of mental or physical incapacity and are unable to do any substantial gainful work because of the impairment. The incapacity must last or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months as affirmed by the medical board.


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SPRS "Death After Retirement"

Benefit to Surviving Spouse*

50% X Final Compensation** = Annual Pension

If No Spouse *

20% for one child, 35% for two, 50% for three or more children, until age 18

If No Spouse * or Children**

25% if one surviving parent; 40% if two surviving parents who are dependent upon the deceased.

* Spouse, Civil Union Partner, or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner:

Spouse: Member and spouse must be married as of the date of death to qualify for survivor benefits. The subsequent remarriage of a surviving spouse following the member's death will terminate the benefit eligibility status;

OR

Civil Union Partner or Eligible Same-Sex Domestic Partner: A civil union or domestic partnership between the member and the civil union partner or eligible same-sex domestic partner, must be in effect as of the date of death in order for the surviving civil union partner or same-sex domestic partner to qualify for survivor benefits. If the surviving civil union partner or eligible same-sex domestic partner subsequently remarries or enters into a civil union after the member's death, his/her benefit eligibility for this benefit is terminated.

** Children: Children means a deceased active or retired member's unmarried children (1) under the age of 18, or (2) of any age who, at the time of the member's death, are disabled because of mental or physical incapacity and are unable to do any substantial gainful work because of the impairment. The incapacity must last or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months as affirmed by the medical board.

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Last Updated: March 27, 2012