New! Download this very informative presentation, "Part-Time Faculty Retirement Options and Issues," [PDF 2011] by Cliff Liehe, City College of San Francisco. Also helpful from Cliff Liehe is this "Retirement Primer for California Community College Part-Time Faculty" [PDF 2007].
As an adjunct, you have a choice of three retirement plan options: the State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) Defined Benefit Plan, the CalSTRS Cash Balance Plan, and a District-provided 403(b) retirement plan administered by Fidelity Investment. You signed up for one of these three plans when you were hired. Each plan requires a different contribution rate from the employee and the employer matches that contribution. Under certain circumstances, you can switch to another plan. (You can also participate in a voluntary 403(b) plan, called a tax sheltered annuity, and sign up for automatic voluntary deductions from your paycheck. There’s no matching contribution from the District in this plan.)
Each plan has very different requirements about how to access those cash benefits, in full or in the form of monthly payments, at the time you retire. For that reason, AFA urges you to contact Human Resources (HR) and Payroll if you are planning to retire in the near future. (Since AFA is not in a position to offer financial or retirement counseling, we also recommend that you consult CalSTRS or Fidelity for additional information and advice about your retirement plans.)
Retirement from Cash Balance or Fidelity Investments requires the following to occur:
- Write your letter of resignation to Payroll and copy that letter to HR.
- HR will change your employment status in the system, so that you will no longer be paying into Cash Balance or Fidelity Investments.
- Payroll will sign off on forms to be sent to Cash Balance or Fidelity Investments.
Retirement from CalSTRS Defined Benefit requires the following to occur:
- Write a letter to HR indicating that you are retiring and wish to have your Sick Leave credited to CalSTRS.
- HR will change your employment status in the system so that you will no longer be paying into Defined Benefit.
In all circumstances you will retain your original Date of Hire and all rights under Article 16: Hourly Assignments, should you decide to return to work as an adjunct, as long as there’s no break-in-service longer than two consecutive semesters. For more information, log onto the AFA Contract at http://www.santarosa.edu/afa/articles.shtml or contact the AFA office at email@example.com or 527-4731.