Retirement Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions (Retirees)

  1. Q. When will I receive my retirement benefit?
    A. Pension checks are payable on the last banking day of each month.

  2. Q. What should I do if I don’t receive my pension check?
    A. If you have not received your check by the 8th day of the following month, contact the Retirement System. A stop payment order will be issued on the original check and a replacement check will be mailed to you.

  3. Q. How long are retirement benefits paid?
    A. For the life of the retiree, including a full monthly payment for the month in which the death of the retiree occurs, and may continue to a spouse or beneficiary depending on form of pension elected at time of retirement. 

  4. Q. Will I get a cost of living increase after retirement?
    A. Yes, according to the Consumer Price Index (U.S. city average index) as compiled by the U.S. Department of Labor. Pensions are adjusted annually beginning with the second January 1 following retirement. Annual increases are limited to 5% each year with a cumulative maximum of 25%.

  5. Q. Can I have my pension payments directly deposited into my bank account?
    A. Yes, by completing a Direct Deposit Authorization form.

  6. Q. How do I change my direct deposit arrangement?
    A. You must complete a new Direct Deposit Authorization form. You may stop direct deposit at any time by completing a Direct Deposit Cancellation form. 

  7. Q. May I have taxes withheld from my retirement check?
    A. Yes, you may have Federal and State of Missouri tax withheld. 

  8. Q. Can I change my tax withholding?
    A. Yes, you may change your tax withholding at any time by completing a new withholding form. 

  9. Q. How do I report a change of address?
    A. You must complete a Change of Address form. Submitting the form timely insures receipt of important mailers including your pension check. 

  10. Q. Will I receive a yearly statement of benefits paid for tax purposes?
    A. Yes, 1099-R’s are mailed annually no later than January 31st. Contact the Retirement System for a duplicate form if you fail to receive your 1099-R. 

  11. Q. Does the Retirement System recognize court orders?
    A. In certain cases, your pension may be reduced by court orders pertaining to matters such as taxes, domestic relations, and child support.

  12. Q. Can I change my retirement option?
    A. No, the selection you made at time of retirement, whether life only, 10-year certain or joint annuity, is irrevocable.

  13. Q. If I retired with the joint annuitant option and my spouse predeceases me, will my pension be adjusted?
    A. No, you will continue to receive the reduced pension.

  14. Q. If I retired with the joint annuitant option and I later remarry, are survivor benefits payable?
    A. No, survivor benefits are payable only to the spouse you were legally married to at time of your retirement.

  15. Q. If I retired with the 10-year certain option, will my pension be adjusted once I have received 120 monthly payments?
    A. No, you will continue to receive the reduced pension.

  16. Q. Will my survivor benefit from my deceased spouse stop if I remarry?
    A. No, you will receive the survivor benefit for life, regardless of your marital status.

  17. Q. What happens to my DROP funds if I die?
    A. Your DROP funds are payable to your designated beneficiary or to your estate if there is no surviving beneficiary. 

  18. Q. Can I change my DROP beneficiary?
    A. Yes, simply contact the Retirement System to obtain a new DROP Beneficiary Election form. 

  19. Q. Is my retirement benefit affected by reemployment?
    A. Your pension will be suspended if you return to work in a position covered by the Retirement System, unless you receive a disability pension, in which case it will be terminated if you work in any capacity, public or private, prior to age 65. In addition, a retiree who continues to work or returns to work for a System Employer after retirement (whether in a covered or non-covered position) will have his/her benefits suspended, unless he/she was at least age 62 at date of retirement or the retiree has been separated from service for at least three (3) months. 

  20. Q. As a disability retiree, are periodic medical examinations required?
    A. Yes, you may be required to undergo a medical examination once a year during the first five years and once in every three-year period thereafter. 

  21. Q. Do payments received from Social Security affect my retirement allowance?
    A. No. 

  22. Q. As a retiree, may I continue my City-sponsored health insurance?
    A. Yes, if you enrolled in a medical plan through the City of St. Louis at time of retirement, you may continue coverage. However, once you terminate coverage through the retiree group you can never reenroll.

  23. Q. If I have my spouse covered under the City-sponsored health insurance, can my spouse remain in the retiree group following my death?
    A. If you elected the joint annuitant form of pension, your spouse can remain in the City plan following your death, otherwise coverage will terminate at the end of that month. 

  24. Q. Are retirees represented on the Board of Trustees?
    A. Yes, one of the six Trustees is elected by and from the retirees.

  25. Q. Is there any residency restriction on a retiree?
    A. No. It should be noted, however, that only retirees residing in the City of St. Louis qualify as candidates for the Board of Trustees.

  26. Q. Is it possible to transfer creditable service from another plan to the System?                                                                                                                 A.  If a member is vested in the City Retirement System, he/she may acquire service credit for prior non-federal, public sector employment in the state of Missouri by purchasing that service. The member may purchase the service by using his/her own money and/or using the value of his/her retirement benefit in the prior retirement plan, if that plan has an agreement with the City. Contact the Retirement System for additional information.

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