Pension benefits are provided to you when you are employed in a qualifying position. As an eligible classified employee, your pension program is administered by the Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS), which determines the plan available to you.

Exceptions:

  • Employees of the University on an Educational Visa (J-1, F-1, etc) are not eligible to participate in the retirement programs per Oregon Revised Statute 238.015(4) and Oregon Administrative Rule 459.010.0025(1).
  • Important: Employees that were not subject to Oregon taxes (including those not living or working in Oregon and Foreign Nationals), could only earn retirement credit (years of service) under the OPSRP pension program from 1/1/2017 to 12/31/2019 pursuant to ORS 352.138(6)(b).
    • In the 2021 legislative session SB 111 changed the definition of salary for OPSRP PERS members effective back to 1/1/2020. Beginning on January 1, 2020, salary for purposes of OPSRP is defined as “the remuneration paid to an active member in return for services to the participating public employer, including remuneration in the form of living quarters, board or other items of value, to the extent the remuneration is, or would be if the member were an Oregon resident, includable in the employee’s taxable income under Oregon law.” ORS 238A.005(17)(a)
    • If you have questions about this please contact PERS at:

Your Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) pension plan has two components:

  1. OPSRP Pension program (Tier 3) OR PERS Pension program (Tier 1 or Tier 2); and
  2. Individual Account Program (IAP)

PLEASE READ CAREFULLY – DISCLAIMER

The information on this website is an overview of the OPSRP/PERS and IAP programs. The descriptions of OPSRP and PERS benefits are based on OSU's and PERS' understanding of the 2003 and subsequent legislation, as amended and as affected by judicial decisions, as of the date of this material. Certain aspects of 2003 PERS legislation are or will be the subject of legal challenges. In addition, PERS regularly adopts administrative rules to implement legislative changes. The descriptions of OPSRP and PERS benefits are therefore subject to modification and/or clarification by new legislation, court decisions, and PERS' administrative rulemaking. In case of conflict between the information on this website and Oregon state law regulating OPSRP/PERS, Oregon state law, and federal regulations will govern.

Program Membership Tiers

  • PERS OPSRP (Tier 3) - hired on or after August 29, 2003
  • PERS Tier 2 - hired between January 1, 1996 and August 28, 2003
  • PERS Tier 1 - hired on or prior to December 31, 1995

New Classified & Temporary Employees

Please review the Roadmap to OSU’s Retirement Benefits: Classified & Temporary Employees for guidance during your first 6 months of employment.

Qualifying Position

Is a position that is expected to complete the six month waiting period and is expected to work at least 600 hours in the calendar year.

Pension Program Details

Your Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) pension plan has two components:

  1. OPSRP Pension program (Tier 3) OR PERS Pension program (Tier 1 or Tier 2); and
  2. Individual Account Program (IAP)

The pension program is administered by the Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS). PERS manages the OPSRP pension program (Tier 3), the PERS pension program (Tier 1 or Tier 2), and the Individual Account Program (IAP) for eligible public employees. Participation in the pension program (OPSRP, PERS) is based on an employee's original eligibility date with a PERS participating employer and their current membership status. Investment of the program funds are managed under the direction of the Oregon Investment Council for the Oregon State Treasury.

The OPSRP and PERS component of the pension program is a defined benefit plan and is funded by OSU. It is a lifetime pension benefit.

The IAP component of your pension program is a defined contribution plan and is funded by contributions of 6% of your subject salary, which OSU currently pays for you.* The 6% contribution is made on wages/salary subject to Oregon taxes; and the amount of compensation used for this contribution calculation is limited. This limit is periodically adjusted for cost-of-living increases. Your account is credited with earnings/losses annually based on investment returns. At retirement, the funds can be withdrawn as a lump-sum payment or in installments. It is not a lifetime benefit.

Important: Employees that were not subject to Oregon taxes (including those not living or working in Oregon and Foreign Nationals), could only earn retirement credit (years of service) under the OPSRP pension program from 1/1/2017 to 12/31/2019 pursuant to ORS 352.138(6)(b).

In the 2021 legislative session SB 111 changed the definition of salary for OPSRP PERS members effective back to 1/1/2020. Beginning on January 1, 2020, salary for purposes of OPSRP is defined as “the remuneration paid to an active member in return for services to the participating public employer, including remuneration in the form of living quarters, board or other items of value, to the extent the remuneration is, or would be if the member were an Oregon resident, includable in the employee’s taxable income under Oregon law.” ORS 238A.005(17)(a)

If you have questions about this please contact PERS at:
Phone: 888-320-7377 or 503-598-7377
Email: customer-service.pers@state.or.us

*Contributions begin after serving a full six month waiting period in a qualifying position. July 1, 2020. For PERS 0.75% of 6% IAP for OPSRP is re-directed to a PERS EPSA account to support employee's future pension. For PERS Tier 1 and 2 a total of 2.5% is re-directed to a PERS EPSA account to support the employee's future pension.

Pension Contributions

  • Must be in a qualifying position
  • Contributions begin
    • New to Oregon PERS
      • Contributions will begin after serving the six full month waiting period
    • Already an Oregon PERS Member
      • Contributions will begin immediately and your PERS tier remains the same (Tier 1, 2, or OPSRP)
  • Amount of contributions
    • IAP - OSU currently pays the employee's 6% contribution for you*
    • OPSRP (Tier 3) or PERS (Tier 1 or Tier 2) pension program - OSU pays an employer contribution that goes into an employer account to fund the PERS or OPSRP pension benefit for eligible employees

*Contributions begin after serving a full six month waiting period in a qualifying position. July 1, 2020. For PERS 0.75% of 6% IAP for OPSRP is re-directed to a PERS EPSA account to support employee's future pension. For PERS Tier 1 and 2 a total of 2.5% is re- directed to a PERS EPSA account to support the employee's future pension.

Vesting

  • IAP
    • 100% vested once membership is established
  • OPSRP pension program (Tier 3)
    • 100% vested after completing five years of qualifying service OR upon reaching “normal” retirement age (age 65 for General Service Employees, age 60 for Police & Fire Employees) while actively employed in a qualifying position
  • PERS pension program (Tier 2)
    • 100% vested after completing five years of qualifying service OR upon reaching “normal” retirement age (age 60 for General Service Employees, age 55 for Police & Fire Employees) while employed in a qualifying position
  • PERS pension program (Tier 1)
    • 100% vested after completing five years of qualifying service OR upon reaching “normal” retirement age (age 58 for General Service Employees, age 55 for Police & Fire Employees) while employed in a qualifying position

Resources

Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (PERS)
PERS is the Plan Administrator for PERS Tier 1, PERS Tier 2, PERS OPSRP (Tier 3), and the IAP

Other Resources

Defined Benefit Plan = pension benefit at retirement is based on a predetermined formula (years of service and average ending salary). This is a lifetime benefit.

Defined Contribution = pension benefit at retirement is based on the contributions to the plan plus any investment earnings. This is not a lifetime benefit.