Service Credit

Eligibility

Act 88 - Reciprocal Retirement Act of 1961 allows you to combine service you may have earned with another Michigan governmental unit in order to qualify for a pension. Examples of a governmental unit include (but are not limited to) a city, township, village, or county, law enforcement division, commission or court, as well as Michigan public schools.

In general, Act 88 helps public servants who have worked either full- or part-time for more than one Michigan governmental employer, but perhaps fall short of pension eligibility with any or all of them. Combining years of service from multiple employers can help you qualify for a pension, but the other service won't count in the calculation of your pension amount.

Retirement system members who took a refund of contributions from the previous governmental unit may contact their previous employer concerning repayment. Those allowed to redeposit a refund must do so within 20 years after service commences with this retirement system. Governmental unit employment may be used to qualify for a retirement pension, but may not be used to calculate a retirement benefit.

It's a good idea to talk to your previous employer and ORS if you think Act 88 can help you qualify for a pension.

Conditions

  • You must have a minimum of 4 years of Judges Retirement System service credit.
  • There cannot be more than a 20-year break in service between your other governmental unit service and your Judges Retirement System service.
  • Act 88 is only used when other Michigan governmental unit service, combined with your Judges Retirement System service, qualifies you for a pension you would not receive otherwise.
  • Act 88 cannot be used to qualify someone for survivor or disability benefits. It can only be used for a regular retirement.
  • Reciprocal service can count toward the pension eligibility requirement, but is not included in your pension calculation.

Cost

Not applicable.

Application

Provide a letter from the governmental employer verifying (1) your dates of employment; (2) hours worked per day (full-time or part-time); and (3) that you participated in the employer's retirement plan.