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3.03: Who is not a member

3.03: Who is not a member

Some types of reporting unit employees are specifically excluded from membership and reporting in this retirement system.

Employees excluded under certain acts or programs
Extended leave of absence (more than two years)
New employees of certain universities
Optional retirement plan (ORP) employees at universities or community colleges
Reporting unit board members
Transitional youth or youth training program enrollees

Employees excluded under certain acts or programs

A person employed by your reporting unit under one of the following programs is excluded from membership in this retirement system if the program exists as a result of any of the following acts or programs:

  • Michigan Youth Corps Act (1983 PA 69).
  • Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (U.S. Public Law 105-220, 112 Stat. 936).
  • Michigan Community Service Corps program (1983 PA 259).
  • Senior Community Service Employment program (U.S. Public Law 89-73).
  • Michigan's PATH program.

 

Exception: If a person was regularly employed by a reporting unit prior to participation in these programs, the person is a member and must be reported. Regular employment is defined as:

  • Continuous employment rendered.
  • With one reporting unit.
  • In a permanent position.
  • For which retirement service credit was earned.

This regular employment could have occurred at any time in the past.

Last updated: 03/13/2012

Extended leave of absence (more than two years)

An employee on an approved leave of absence is considered an active member until two years have passed without service credit (hours) being earned. Once an employee on leave has passed that threshold, ORS considers the employee to be terminated for the purposes of retirement benefits and treats the employee as a deferred member (if vested in the retirement system) or an inactive member (if not vested). 

This is in accordance with the retirement act as amended in 2012, which states: "a public school employee includes a public school employee on an approved leave of absence that does not exceed 2 years from the date the employee ceases to accumulate service credit" (MCL 38.1306(6)).

Your reporting unit may continue to consider this employee as on a leave, and there is still an employer-employee relationship, but ORS considers them to be terminated for retirement benefit purposes. ORS rules regarding terminated, deferred, or inactive members apply to this employee as well.

Notes:

New employees of certain universities

Newly hired employees of the seven universities listed below are excluded from membership in this retirement system unless they earned service as a member of this retirement system for one of these universities before Jan. 1, 1996.The universities are:

  • Central Michigan University.
  • Eastern Michigan University.
  • Ferris State University.
  • Lake Superior State University.
  • Michigan Technological University.
  • Northern Michigan University.
  • Western Michigan University.

Members hired by these universities between Jan. 1, 1996, and March 28, 1996, were retirement system members from the date of hire until March 28, 1996, and then became ineligible for membership. If you must report employees in that category and need more information, Contact ORS Employer Reporting.

Last updated: 12/27/2018

Optional retirement plan (ORP) employees at universities or community colleges

Community colleges and universities that participate in MPSERS can offer their employees an optional retirement plan (ORP). Employees of these reporting units who elected the ORP are excluded from membership. 

When a retiree from this retirement system earns wages from a participating reporting unit, your reporting unit must report retiree wages to ORS. The Reporting Retirees section of the Employer Information website provides you information and reporting instructions for your retired employees. This includes the link to the Working after retirement - employer guide.

For more information see Community college employees who elect an optional retirement plan (ORP) in section 3.02: Special membership circumstances of this chapter.

Last updated: 08/03/2022

Reporting unit board members

A person who is not regularly employed by a reporting unit and who is serving as a reporting unit board member is not a member of this retirement system and must not be reported for retirement purposes.

Last updated: 11/04/2020

Transitional youth or youth training program enrollees

An employee hired through participation in any of the programs below who is not regularly employed, is not a member of the MPSERS system and should not be reported to ORS. If the employee is hired permanently by the reporting unit as a result of the program, they would become a MPSERS member effective the date of their permanent hire.

  • A person enrolled in a Neighborhood Youth Corps Program.
  • A person participating in a program through Michigan Rehabilitation Services.
  • A person hired as part of the Michigan youth corps or Michigan community service corps.
  • A person enrolled in a transitional public employment program as defined in the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act of 1973.

 Last updated: 06/19/2014