Provides A Choice Of Benefit Options
The Arkansas Public Employees Retirement System (APERS) is a cost sharing, multiple employer, defined benefit plan. Participating employers include most state agencies, all counties, plus a number of municipal entities and school districts.
APERS provides pension and retirement benefits for employees who meet the program’s established eligibility requirements. Participants have a choice of several options to help tailor their retirement to their individual needs.
Options include the Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP) and Partial Annuity Withdrawal (PAW) briefly described below, plus additional options under APERS.
The APERS Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP)
Under DROP you may continue to work for a maximum of seven years while a percentage of your benefit is deposited into an account that accrues interest.
When you retire, you can choose one of four distribution options: a lump-sum payment; a monthly annuity; a rollover to an approved employer-sponsored retirement plan; or a rollover to an IRA.
Keep in mind, when your seven-year DROP period ends, you must retire or you will forfeit the balance in your DROP account. (Note: There is no minimum DROP participation period.)
The APERS Partial Annuity Withdrawal Option (PAW)
Partial Annuity Withdrawal (PAW) provides an alternative for members who can’t, or choose not to, participate in DROP.
APERS members who work beyond the date they are eligible for an unreduced monthly benefit are eligible to take an advance payment of up to 60 months of their monthly annuity. (Note: PAW is elected at retirement.)
There are three ways you PAW may be paid to you: directly to you as a lump sum; as a rollover distribution to a qualified plan; or as a partial lump sum with the remainder rolled over to a qualified retirement plan.
Keep in mind, to be eligible for PAW, you must meet one of the program’s age and service requirements.
Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)
How long do I need to work before
I am vested in APERS?
What is the APERS retirement Age?
To be eligible for retirement, you must meet certain age and service requirements. These requirements depend on which type of retirement and option you have chosen.
- Age 65 or more with at least 5 years of service
- Any age with 28 years of service
- Or age 60 or more with 20 years of service (contributory members prior to July 1, 2005)
Normal Retirement with PAW plan:
- Must meet normal retirement requirements and continue working past eligibility for normal retirement
- Age 55 with at least 5 years of service
- Any age with 25 years of service
- Up to 10 years before normal retirement age