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What to Expect After You Apply

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Michigan Office of Retirement Services

What to Expect After You Apply

What to Expect After You Apply

Here's what happens from the time you apply for retirement in miAccount and submit all required documents to when you begin receiving regular monthly pension payments. Log in to miAccount to check the status of your application. You'll see a link at the top of your miAccount homepage.

Application review

After you submit your application, we review it to make sure it has all the required information and documentation. If anything is missing or incomplete, we'll contact you with an explanation of what we still need; this could delay processing your application.

Benefit summary and preliminary estimate

When you submit your retirement application in miAccount, a summary of your selections is immediately available to you including your retirement effective date, pension option, beneficiary, insurance choices, direct deposit instructions, and tax withholdings requested. It'll also give you a preliminary pension estimate which won't include your final salary, final payouts, or any recently purchased service credit.

Final payroll details

About 45 days before your retirement effective date, we'll request your last day worked and final payroll information from your employer(s). Your employer provides details of your wages along with any pay received in addition to your base contract such as retroactive contract settlements, longevity, overtime pay, etc.

The Michigan Office of Retirement Services (ORS) can't make a final eligibility determination until every employer you worked for during your final average compensation period has submitted your final payroll details.

First pension payment

In order to provide your first pension payment on time, we may not wait for your final payroll details from your employer to calculate your pension — we would use the payroll information already reported. If this situation applies to you, we'll send you an initial benefit award letter detailing your initial pension calculation and insurance information.

After your employer submits your final employment information, we review your account and adjust your monthly pension amount. We'll send you another letter detailing any changes along with information about payment schedules, taxes, and a guide to your reporting responsibilities.

If your first payment is delayed while we gather final salary information, you'll be paid retroactive to your retirement effective date.

Ongoing pension payments

Pensions are paid on the 25th of each month for the month they're due. If the 25th falls on a weekend or holiday, watch for your payment on the business day before. (December payments are issued about one week early.)

Your pension statements

Your statements are available at any time in miAccount.

You can obtain your federal Form 1099-R using miAccount. This pension income statement reports the payments made to you during the previous year and any taxes withheld. You will need it to file your income tax return. Each January, ORS will also send you a Form 1099-R.

Your insurance enrollments

When your retirement application is processed, we forward your insurance enrollment information to the health, prescription drug, dental, and vision insurance carriers. Each insurance carrier will mail identification cards and materials directly to you. If you need health services before your cards arrive, contact the insurance carrier directly to get your policy number or to verify coverage.

The State of Michigan 401(k) and 457 Plans

If you're in the Defined Contribution retirement plan or the Personal Healthcare Fund and you would like to learn more about your options for your accounts, contact Voya Financial at 800-748-6128 or visit its website.

Once you're retired, there is no active link between your human resources data and Voya. Therefore, you will need to report any changes to your address, phone, email, and dependent information with ORS and also with Voya.

If you disagree with the decision

If you disagree with a determination made by ORS concerning your retirement benefits, you may request a review by writing to ORS, stating the basis for your disagreement and providing all information you believe supports your position. Your request will be thoroughly reviewed, and you will be notified in writing of the outcome.

IRS pension limits

Section 415(b) of the IRS code, which limits the amount of a pension that is payable from a Defined Benefit Plan, affects a small group of retirees who earned a very high pension. If you are in this group, ORS will let you know how the pension amount that exceeds the IRS limit will be paid to you.

If you are overpaid or underpaid

The retirement law requires ORS to correct any payment errors. As a result, any person who receives a payment in error will be required to repay it. This also applies if you are underpaid — if your payroll office reports a wage correction that results in an underpayment of benefits to you, you will be reimbursed.

Glossary of Terms