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New Members in the Defined Benefit Plan

Your journey to retirement starts now and PERA is your partner! Find out about benefits, programs, and optional ways to save more for retirement.

What You Need to Know 

You and your employer make monthly contributions

  • Every time you get paid, a portion of your paycheck automatically goes into your PERA retirement account. This money is always yours, even if you leave your job covered by PERA.
  • Your employer also contributes to PERA and PERA invests those dollars for you and all PERA members.
  • For most members, PERA serves as a substitute for Social Security. This means every time you are paid, a portion of your paycheck goes to PERA and not to Social Security.

When you retire, you'll receive monthly payments for life

  • When the time comes to retire, you will receive a monthly check from PERA for the rest of your life.
  • Your benefit is determined by the amount of time you work at your PERA-covered job, your age when you retire, and the average of your highest average salaries.

Changing jobs

  • If you get a new job at an employer that has PERA coverage, you will continue to build for your future retirement.
  • If you leave for a new job that is not covered under PERA, you can still collect a benefit in retirement if you leave your account with PERA, or you can choose to take a refund of your contributions, interest and a potential match.

Additional benefits from PERA

  • All PERA members have survivor and disability benefits that are automatically included and available at no additional cost, which offer financial security for loved ones and income protection if you are unable to work.
  • You can save even more toward your retirement by investing in the optional, low-cost PERAPlus 401(k) Plan.
  • PERA also offers members the option to enroll in a voluntary life insurance program.
Next Steps 
  • Set up your online PERA account access by clicking "Register as a new user."
  • Name a beneficiary and keep your contact information current with PERA. It’s especially a good idea to review this information if you get married, divorced, or have children.
  • Stay informed about your PERA benefits. Read our emails, watch our videos, attend a PERA webinar (we recommend the Benefit Information Webinar), follow us on social media, and review your member dashboard.
  • Add to your retirement savings by enrolling in a PERAPlus Plan. You won’t regret having more money in retirement.
When to Contact PERA 

By logging in to your PERA account, you can make changes to your information or you may call the PERA Customer Service Center at 1-800-759-PERA (7372).

  • Update personal information (name, address, phone, and email)
  • Add or remove beneficiaries
  • Request a refund or a rollover of your PERA account if you leave PERA-covered employment and don’t anticipate returning to a job in public service