ORBIT

Retirement Monitor - August 2020

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Retirement Monitor header

 

 

 

 

Table of Contents

Graphic with the words "Employer HR & Payroll contact Updates" on it

 

Does the North Carolina Retirement Systems Division have your current HR and Payroll contact information?
As members move through the retirement process, we verify crucial information with employers. In order to avoid delays in processing retirements and other benefits, we want to make sure we have current information on file.

If the contact person handling retirement matters in your agency changes, be sure to notify the Retirement Systems Division in writing or by email. Also, we ask that employers inform us of changes in other related matters, such as changes to the mailing address, email address or telephone number we have on file.

Please contact our Employer Reporting Unit by email at OER@nctreasurer.com.

 

 

Graphic with the words "All in a Day's Work" on it

 

Termination Reporting

When employees terminate, regardless of the reason, we rely on you as the employer to provide the correct information for that employee’s service to the Teachers' and State Employees' or Local Governmental Employees' Retirement Systems in a timely manner. Timely reporting correct termination information will help prevent incorrect service credit and delays in future actions a member may take after termination (i.e., retirement or withdrawing contributions). Please keep the following in mind, when reporting your employees’ termination records on your ORBIT report:

  • Termination reporting must include both the date and the reason for termination.
  • Termination date should be the last date on which the employee reported to work.
  • Pay period dates CANNOT extend after the termination dates.
  • Pay period end dates in the final payout records should end with the same date as the termination date.
  • Employees have the option to withdraw their contributions if they chose to. A refund of these contributions is available to the employee 60 days after their effective date of resignation or termination.
  • An employee’s refund can be delayed due to an interruption in the employer’s reporting to the Retirement Systems. To prevent this, please report final earnings and any adjustment records for employees timely.

Any payments made to the employee after the termination date must be adjusted to dates before termination. Otherwise, the record will be placed in error status.

For more information go to our Employer ORBIT Training and Reporting web page and scroll to the FAQs at the bottom of the page.

Back to School

Reporting School Personnel

It is important that personnel at school systems, universities and community colleges adhere to the following reminder regarding school personnel reporting:

To ensure that your employees receive proper service credit in their Retirement Systems memberships, please report employees with the correct RSP-Retirement Service Period type and the correct RSP dates in accordance with the number of full or partial calendar months in which they are expected to work during a school year.

The Retirement Service Period is not based on the number of checks the school personnel receive in a given school year.

  • Example of an 11-month employee: RSP dates 8/10/2014- 6/10/15 includes 11 full or partial calendar months. Report as 11-month Retirement Service Period type.
  • Example of a 10-month employee: RSP dates: 8/10/2014 – 5/15/2015. Includes 10 full or partial calendar months. Report as 10-month Retirement Service Period type.

Note: Failure to clear errors for a member’s account can result in incorrect service accrual, incorrect retirement calculation, and impact retirement benefit eligibility.

Reorganization through Reduction (RTR) Program

Under direction of the Office of State Human Resources (OSHR), the Reorganization through Reduction program is a voluntary employee separation program which enables an agency to restructure or reorganize to gain financial and/or skill set efficiencies and increase effectiveness. This allows the agency to retain the vacated position to repurpose to meet the agency’s business needs, objectives, and goals. Please visit the OSHR website for the Reorganization Through Reduction Policy.

Required Minimum Distribution Age Change

Recent legislation raises the age for the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) from 70½ to 72 for anyone who turns 70½ after January 1, 2020. In most cases, the Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System, Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System, Consolidated Judicial Retirement System and Legislative Retirement System are required to pay benefits to non-retired members with open accounts by April 1 of the year following the year in which the member reaches age 72 or ceases to be an employee, whichever is later.

Members who are vested (five or more years of creditable service) who fail to complete the retirement process will receive a monthly retirement benefit based on the maximum allowance.

Non-vested members who fail to complete a refund application will receive a refund of their contributions and interest by April 1 of the year following the year in which the member reaches age 72.

Graphic with "CARES Act" on it

 

Second Loans under the CARES Coronavirus Related Distribution (CRD) Provision

In order to provide further support to participants during the pandemic, the NC Supplemental Retirement Plans Board of Trustees passed a resolution permitting eligible participants to take out a second loan in the limited circumstance of CRD loans through September 22, 2020. This is different from our long-standing loan policy. 

There are several employees that have opted to use a second loan during this time, and we wanted to provide clarity around the CRD loan process.

  • The NC Supplemental Retirement Plans allow CRD-eligible participants to take out a  loan even if they already have an outstanding loan.
  • Ideally, CRD loans will be paid back via payroll just like standard loans. This involves working with your payroll provider to make sure repayment is handled appropriately and may require adding additional “payroll slots.”
  • If a participant takes a second loan, each loan payment must be made separately. Loan payments cannot be combined. If a single payment is made for two loans, one loan will be paid down first and faster, with the second loan going into default.
  • We realize not all payroll providers have the same capabilities. If your payroll provider cannot accommodate a second payment, the payment can be made by check and mailed in. Employees have the primary responsibility to repay the loan. Therefore, we will accept payment by check for the second loan from the employee or the employer. These second loan payments should be sent to:
NC 401(k)/457 Plans Processing Center,
PO Box 5360, Scranton PA 18505 
The last 4 digits of the participant’s social security number
and “loan payment” should be noted in the memo section of the check.

The Treasurer, Board of Trustees and staff recognize the CARES Act provisions have been able to fill a need for some of our participants during this pandemic. We appreciate your accommodation in providing support as well. If you have additional questions, we encourage you to reach out to your counselor regarding your specific situation or call Prudential at  1-866-627-5267 option 2. 

 

Graphic with images of people on either side of a podium and the title Retirement Planning Conferences

 

The Department of State Treasurer Retirement Systems Division conducts retirement conferences for members of the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System and the Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System.

The conferences provide an orientation for new members, pre-retirement planning information for members closer to retirement, and educational information for personnel officers and others who handle retirement matters. In addition, Prudential Retirement, our third-party administrator, also offers information on the NC 401(k) and NC (457) Plans, or the NC 403(b) Program at the conferences.

Registration is required for Retirement Planning Conferences or webinars and we reserve space for employers to provide this opportunity to employees as a group.

If you are interested in hosting or participating virtual conference for your employees, please contact Doug Mayer to schedule (doug.mayer@nctreasurer.com).

Click here to view our prescheduled events.

State Health Plan logo

 

State Health Plan Open Enrollment is Coming!

State Health Plan (Plan) Open Enrollment for the 2021 benefit year will be held October 15-31, 2020.

To help State Health Plan agency employers get the word out to employees about Open Enrollment, click here to view the 2021 Open Enrollment poster. Employers are encouraged to print it out and post at worksites or share via email with employees who may be working remotely.

This year, the Plan recognizes that many employees may be working remotely and your ability to communicate with them may be limited to email. The Plan is here to help and will be offering numerous virtual opportunities for your employees to learn more about their 2021 benefits and Open Enrollment. The Plan will be offering several webinars, which is a great way your employees can get all the information they need to make an informed decision. Please encourage your employees to register for a webinar. Webinar dates and times will be posted soon on the Plan’s website. In addition, employees of State Health Plan agencies should watch the mail for their 2021 Open Enrollment Decision Guide.

Important note for retirees: State Health Plan Medicare Advantage plans are moving to Humana in 2021! As part of this move, State Health Plan retirees will see substantial savings in dependent premiums. For details, retirees can visit the Plan’s Humana transition website page. They may also register for an August 20 webinar on the Humana transition. In addition, retirees should watch the mail for a guide to more informational webinars and Telephone Town Hall events, and for their 2021 Open Enrollment Decision Guide.

Separately, the State Health Plan has expanded the Open Enrollment tobacco attestation activity requirement for tobacco users who want to reduce their premium for 2021, and they can take action now and don’t need to wait.

Before a member visits a MinuteClinic or Primary Care Provider for a session, they should go to the State Health Plan website and print off instructions for their provider to ensure their FREE visit is billed correctly. (If a member combines the tobacco cessation visit with another service, there may be a copay.) This document is not required to take to the visit. It’s simply a suggestion to ensure the visit is billed correctly. This action is ONLY for tobacco users who want to reduce their monthly premium by $60 per month in 2021.

Please note: Tobacco users who are retired only need to attest if they want to enroll in the 80/20 Plan. The 70/30 Plan remains premium-free for retirees.

If a member is NOT a tobacco user, employees will simply need to attest to that online during Open Enrollment, October 15-31, 2020.

Supplemental Insurance for Retirees Open Enrollment is in October

Pierce Insurance Agency Inc. offers optional supplemental vision and dental insurance and identity theft coverage to retirees. New retirees are contacted directly by Pierce Insurance with information about enrollment. Existing retirees can enroll during the annual Retiree Supplemental Insurance Open Enrollment Period which will take place October 1 – 31, 2020. If you currently have supplemental insurance through Pierce, and don't wish to make any changes, you do not need to take any action.

Graphic with Supplemental Plans logo and NAGDCA leadership award winner 2020 graphic

 

Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, CPA, Supplemental Retirement Board of Trustees and Staff Recognized with Leadership Award in Plan Design & Administration

Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, CPA, the Supplemental Retirement Board of Trustees (Board) and staff have been recognized by the National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators (NAGDCA) for outstanding achievement in Plan Design and Administration.

Each year, NAGDCA recognizes excellence and innovation in government defined contribution plans and North Carolina has consistently received recognition in a variety of categories. Last year, North Carolina received a Leadership Award for their groundbreaking enhancement of the Supplemental Retirement Plans’ investment lineup and custom asset allocation tool (GoalMaker®), impacting over 260k participant accounts up to and through retirement.

This year, North Carolina is recognized for its reinvigorated messaging and the important role employer contributions can make in helping public servants be ‘retirement ready.’ There are over 1,100 employers and nearly half of those offer some form of employer contribution. Moreover, the rate of participation continues to increase each year.

“Our goal is to provide retirement savings opportunities for those who teach, protect and otherwise serve the state of North Carolina. In doing so, we want to make sure that we are reducing fees, enhancing value and broadening the options and education available to employers. The Board has played a pivotal role in providing meaningful and timely oversight and this award goes to a team effort. I want to thank members of the Board, staff, employers and our vendors for working together to make an impact year after year,” said Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, CPA.

Plan Administration is concerned with the ways plans are created and services are structured and represents the most direct way a plan sponsor can affect employees’ retirement outcomes. From among the outstanding designs available in state and local government plans, NAGDCA annually awards the best in the field to recognize those who are leading the way in this important aspect of public sector defined contribution administration. North Carolina is proud to receive the Leadership Award for Plan Design and Administration in 2019 and 2020.

North Carolina Supplemental Retirement Plans Offer Live and On-demand Presentations

Live Currently Virtual Presentations are scheduled by request. Contact Your Retirement Education Counselors who work on behalf of the North Carolina Total Retirement Plans to schedule a group meeting.

NC 401(k) & NC 457 Enrollment Presentations - Overview of the State-sponsored North Carolina 401(k) & NC 457 Plans.

NC 403(b) Enrollment Presentation - Overview of the State-sponsored North Carolina 403(b) Program

NC Nearing Retirement Presentation - Describes actions that individuals should consider taking as they approach and move beyond their planned retirement date. Includes overview of Social Security, required minimum distribution, longevity risk, Medicare options, Roth conversions and more.

On Demand- available anytime: 15-minute video to provide an overview of the State-sponsored retirement plans. Very helpful for New Hire Orientations.

                NC 401(k) Retirement Plan https://webinars.on24.com/pruretirement/NCPlan401k

                NC 401(k)|NC 457 Retirement Plans https://webinars.on24.com/pruretirement/ncplan401k457

                NC 401(k)|NC 457|NC 403(b) Retirement Plans https://webinars.on24.com/pruretirement/NCPlan401k457403b