If you are called to active duty military service, you will have time served granted to you at no cost, if you receive an other than dishonorable discharge and return to covered employment within a year of discharge from active duty. See your human resource office for more information.

The following benefits are available to you:

Service Retirement

Pays a monthly benefit for life, upon reaching age and service requirements.

Eligibility for Benefit

You do not accrue service credit while on leave without pay for active duty military service.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

Active duty military service can be granted at no cost and be counted toward vesting and a service retirement benefit upon reentry into a covered position. You must return to covered employment within 12 months of a discharge that is other than dishonorable. You must submit a copy of your DD214 and apply for the service by filling out an Application for Purchase of Prior Service Credit VRS-26.

Purchase Service

Prior service credit counts toward the five years needed to become vested and eligible for retirement.

Eligibility for Benefit

When on leave, after-tax purchase agreements terminate after two months if payment is not received. Pretax purchase agreements freeze in an active status while on leave without pay; no payroll deductions can be made.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

If you were purchasing service with an after-tax agreement, you must reapply to purchase the remaining service. If you were purchasing service with a pretax agreement, deductions should resume immediately upon your return to active employment in a VRS-covered position.

Disability

Disability Retirement

Pays a monthly benefit for life if you become mentally or physically unable to perform job duties and your condition is total and likely to be permanent. (Not available to state employees in VSDP.)

Eligibility for Benefit

You can apply while employed or up to 90 days of the last day of employment. If you are on active duty military leave, you may apply at any time while on military leave.


Virginia Sickness & Disability Program (VSDP)

Provides income replacement in the event of short-term or long-term disability.

Eligibility for Benefit

You may use family and personal leave to extend active employment status to retain coverage. You will not receive sick leave and family and personal leave while on leave without pay.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

VSDP sick and family and personal leave resumes with new balances.


Death-in-Service

Pays any member contributions and interest in your defined benefit member contribution account to your named beneficiary or to your spouse, minor child or parent in the event of your death as an active member . This payment is in addition to any VRS group life insurance benefits you may have.

Eligibility for Benefit

Continues while you are on leave without pay for active duty military service.

Insurance

Health Insurance

Coverage is the same as during regular employment.

Eligibility for Benefit

Extended coverage (under COBRA) continues for 18 months while you are on leave for active duty military service. If you are a state employee, your employer continues to pay the employer portion of the premium. You pay the cost of dependent coverage.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

Coverage continues with premiums paid through payroll deductions.


Basic Group Life Insurance

See Group Life Insurance Program
Does not pay accidental death and dismemberment benefits if death results from an act of war.

Eligibility for Benefit

If you are on military leave without pay, you may continue basic group life insurance coverage for the duration of the leave period if the premiums are paid. If you pay the employee premium, your employer will collect the premium and remit it to VRS on the member's behalf. If your employer pays the premium, your employer will remit the premium to VRS. If you do not pay the required premium, coverage ceases during the leave period. Coverage is reinstated once you return to a covered position.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

Benefits and payment methods continue as before leave without pay.


Optional Life Insurance

See Group Life Insurance Program

Eligibility for Benefit

If you are on military leave without pay, you may continue optional life coverage for the duration of the leave period if the premiums are paid. If you do not pay the required premium, coverage ceases during the leave period.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

Coverage continues with premiums paid through payroll deduction. You may drop optional coverage while on leave without pay for active military service and be reinstated without having to provide evidence of good health for the same or lesser amount. The deduction must resume immediately upon your reemployment in a covered position.

Defined Contribution Plans

Deferred Compensation Plan

The Deferred Compensation Plan (DCP) is a voluntary tax-deferred savings plan available to state employees and eligible employees of participating political subdivisions.

Eligibility for Benefit

Contributions cease while you are on leave without pay for active duty military service. If you continue to receive a paycheck while on active duty, you may continue to make contributions to DCP.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

If you meet the requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA), you may make up contributions you missed during the period of service.


Cash Match Plan

The Cash Match Plan provides employer matching contributions for state employee participants in the Deferred Compensation Plan and participating political subdivision employees whose employers provide the match.

Eligibility for Benefit

No employer match is made while you are on leave without pay. If you receive a paycheck and contribute to the DCP while on active duty, you continue receiving matching employer contributions.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

If you participate in the Commonwealth’s 457 Plan and elect to make up the contributions missed during your period of leave, you are eligible to receive the cash match associated with those contributions. If you are employed by a college or university where eligibility for the cash match is based on contributions to a 403(b), contact your human resource office for information on qualifying for the cash match.


Optional Retirement Plan

The Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) is a defined contribution retirement plan available to certain employees designated by the Code of Virginia.

Eligibility for Benefit

Contributions cease while you are on leave without pay for active duty military service. If you continue to receive a paycheck while on active duty, you are eligible to receive any employer contribution amounts.

Benefits Upon Return to VRS Employment

Upon return to active employment, you are eligible to receive any missed employer contributions. You must provide ICMA-RC with a copy of military orders, date of call-up and employer contribution amount. Your employer should determine appropriate catch-up amounts and, with your assistance, work with ICMA-RC to ensure catch-up employer contributions are properly made.

Questions about the Optional Retirement Plan for Political Appointees

Steven Scott, Plan Manager
ICMA-RC
Riverfront Plaza
951 E. Byrd Street, Suite 530
Richmond, VA 23219
Toll-Free: 888-803-2731
Cell: 202-360-0102
VRS-DCPLAN1 (877-327-5261)

 
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