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Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I receive confirmation of my retirement choice?

    Upon receipt of your plan choice election, a confirmation of your choice will be mailed to you at your home address as reported by your employer within 5-7 business days. If you have moved, please update your address with your local personnel office as soon as possible. If you are in the Investment Plan, have an email address on file and have not opted out of electronic delivery, you will receive an email notice indicating you will need to log into your Investment Plan account in order to view your confirmation.

  • What happens with my retirement contributions while I am still in my choice period and have not made an election?

    Beginning on your first day of employment, you are automatically enrolled in the FRS Pension Plan and begin to accrue benefits under that plan. If you elect to join the Investment Plan before your enrollment deadline, all of the retirement contributions (less any earnings) paid on your behalf by your employer into the Pension Plan Trust Fund will be transferred to your Investment Plan account to become your opening account balance.


    Be sure to make an active election during your choice window, even if the default plan is the plan you are choosing. If you think the FRS Investment Plan is the best plan for you, enroll right away. Depending on your membership class, you may begin receiving higher contributions to your Investment Plan account the month after your enrollment election is received (as soon as administratively possible) if the current contribution rate is higher than the uniform blended rate.


    The earlier higher contributions begin, the quicker your account balance will grow. Don't miss out on months of potentially higher contributions by waiting until your enrollment deadline.


    Your enrollment period will end at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time, on the last business day of the eighth month following your month of hire. Your initial election will be considered your initial choice or first election. If your date of hire is on or after January 1, 2018 and you do not make an active plan election, you will be automatically enrolled as follows; this automatic enrollment (or default) is considered your initial choice or first election.


    Membership Class Plan Default
    Special Risk Class Pension Plan
    All classes (except Special Risk Class) Investment Plan
  • I'm a rehired employee. I previously left FRS employment but I didn't draw retirement benefits. Now I'm returning to FRS employment. Do I have a choice between the two plans?

    If you already made a plan choice then you will be returned to the plan you were in prior to leaving employment. If this is the first time you've been rehired since the Investment Plan began or previously terminated employment prior to making a choice during an established choice period, you will be given a choice between two plans. As with a new employee, you'll be enrolled automatically in the Pension Plan on your rehire date and you will have until the last business day of the eighth month after your rehire date to select a retirement Plan. See the question above about making an election during your initial election window.

  • As a newly hired employee, will I receive information to help me decide which retirement plan to choose? If so, when
    will I receive it?

    Yes. You will receive a great deal of support in deciding which retirement plan is best for you. You should receive a new hire orientation brochure from your employer on your first day of employment. This contains a brief overview of your retirement plan choices. Approximately 60 days later you will receive a New Employee FRS Enrollment Kit along with your Personal Identification Number (PIN).


    You will also have access to the online CHOICE SERVICE on MyFRS.com, where you can model your retirement plan options and receive personalized estimates of your retirement benefit for both plans. Finally, experienced financial planners at EY are available at the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 2, to provide you with free, unbiased financial counseling. This personalized, one-on-one counseling, can help you decide which retirement plan may be best for you.

  • Do I need to be actively working in an FRS covered position to be eligible to make a retirement plan election?

    If you are a current FRS-covered employee and using your 1st or 2nd election opportunity to change plans, your Election Enrollment Form or online election must be submitted and received by the Plan Choice Administrator while still earning salary and service credit and prior to your termination from employment. If you terminate and your form is not received prior to 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time on the day you terminated, your plan change will be rejected. For example, if you make an online election on May 15 or submit your election enrollment form and it is received by the Plan Choice Administrator on May 15, you may terminate on May 16 or after. However, if you terminated on May 12 and you made your online election on May 15 or your form was received by Plan Choice Administrator on May 15, your election will be rejected.

  • What retirement plans can I choose?

    There are two very different retirement plans to choose from: the FRS Pension Plan and the FRS Investment Plan. Your most important decision is which of these two plans you want going forward. Within these two plans there is the potential of three choices. The Pension Plan (a defined benefit plan) is one choice; the Investment Plan's (a defined contribution plan) 100% Transfer Option is a second choice; and the Investment Plan's Hybrid Option (a combination of a defined benefit and defined contribution plan) is the third choice. Click here to get a full description of the differences between the two plans.

  • How should I take into account DROP participation when deciding between the Pension Plan and the Investment Plan?

    DROP allows you to simultaneously earn a salary and retirement income under the Pension Plan. That means you can accumulate a tax-deferred "nest egg" while you are still employed with an FRS participating employer in an FRS-covered position. Note that Investment Plan members are not eligible for DROP. To help you decide, the CHOICE SERVICE will provide online modeling so you can investigate the impact of DROP participation on your benefits under the two plans. Or, you can request an estimate from the Division of Retirement.

  • I'm a new teacher on a 10 month contract who started on April 2. Our school year ends on May 26, but my retirement plan
    choice period goes through December 31. Can I make a plan choice while on my summer break or must I wait until returning
    to work in the Fall to enroll?

    For school district employees on less than 12-month contracts (and who are making their initial election) it depends on your status at the end of the contract year and whether your employment was terminated at that time. You may make your retirement plan election at any time prior to the end of the school year. If you or your school district does not terminate your service at the end of the school year or prior to you making a plan choice, you may make a plan election during the summer break at any time prior to your choice period deadline. However, you must return to work for the school year, without terminating, for your plan choice to be valid. If you or your school district terminates your employment at the end of the school year prior to your making a plan choice, you will receive Pension Plan retirement credit for the service rendered during the school term and upon returning to employment you will receive a new choice period. If you elect the Investment Plan with the new choice, the accrued value of your previous Pension Plan service will be transferred to the Investment Plan as your opening account balance.

  • If I select the Investment Plan, what's the monthly contribution that will be paid to my Plan account?

    The monthly contribution depends on your employment class, as shown below.

    Membership Class Paid by Employee Paid by Employer
    Regular Class 3.00% 3.30%
    Special Risk Class 3.00% 11.00%
    Special Risk Administrative Support Class 3.00% 4.95%
    Elected Officers'Class- (Judges) 3.00% 10.23%
    Elected Officers'Class - (Legislature/Cabinet/Public Defender/State Attorney) 3.00% 6.38%
    Elected Officers'Class -(County and Local) 3.00% 8.34%
    Senior Management Service Class 3.00% 4.67%
  • I'm already in a deferred compensation plan. Why would I choose the Investment Plan if I have enough money at risk right now?

    When choosing between the Pension Plan and the Investment Plan, take a close look at what each has to offer, before ruling either plan in or out as the right choice for you. It may be that in your circumstances, the Investment Plan simply provides a higher benefit than the Pension Plan. For instance, vesting is 1 year in the Investment Plan and 8 years in the Pension Plan (6 years if first enrolled in the FRS prior to July 1, 2011). Nonetheless, an important factor to consider in making your choice is your total portfolio of retirement assets both inside and outside the FRS. Review your income goals and the level of investment risk you're willing to take. And be sure to get help making your assessment by calling the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line 1-866-446-9377, Option 2 and/or visiting the CHOICE SERVICE on MyFRS.com.

  • Is the FRS trying to get me to choose the Investment Plan?

    No. The FRS is not trying to get you to choose the Investment Plan over the Pension Plan. It has no preference. Its goal is to provide objective information on both plans and give you the support you need to make an informed choice. It DOES want you to focus on your future retirement needs so you will begin to plan for your future. For that reason, it will provide you with ongoing investment and retirement planning information, which everyone can benefit from, no matter which plan they choose. On the average, keep in mind that most retirement plans provide you with an income of less than half your current salary. Most experts agree that you need about 70-90% of your current salary to retire comfortably. To make up the gap, all of us should be thinking about saving and investing.

  • Isn't it better in these times of uncertainty to have a guaranteed benefit instead of one that's tied to the stock market?

    First, it's important to understand that under both plans, if you stay long enough to vest, you'll get a benefit at retirement and, if you wish, it could be a guaranteed monthly payment for your lifetime. But there are uncertainties under both plans about the amount of that benefit and whether that benefit will be enough for retirement. That's because both plans deliver a benefit based on a number of variable factors. For the Pension Plan, it's salary and length of service that are uncertain. You really don't know ahead of time what they will be and how they will affect the formula and your benefit. For the Investment Plan, it's investment earnings that are the most uncertain. You don't know ahead of time how your investments will perform. Experts do know, if it's any comfort, that the stock market has outperformed other investments over the long term, even following unexpected events or tragedies. So, keep an open mind and evaluate both plans, as well as your own financial situation, using the MyFRS Financial Guidance Program. Make a realistic and informed assessment of your future (e.g., length of FRS service) and your comfort with risk. That way you can find out which plan is more likely to provide you with the highest benefit.

  • How will I make my FRS plan selection?

    You can make your initial retirement plan choice selection in several ways:

    • Online. Visit the online CHOICE SERVICE or ChooseMyFRSplan.com and make your selection.
    • By phone. Regular Class and Special Risk Class members can call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377 (TRS 711) and speak with an Alight Solutions representative (available 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time/7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time, M - F, except holidays).
    • By online form. Use the online Retirement Plan Enrollment Form based on your membership class available on MyFRS.com.
    • By paper. Use the Retirement Plan Enrollment Form based on your membership class available on MyFRS.com, and submit it either by fax or by mail as shown on the form.
  • If I elect to join the Investment Plan, what will be my effective date in the new plan?

    As a new employee, you have a choice of two FRS retirement plans: the Investment Plan and the Pension Plan. Enrollment in the Investment Plan will be retroactive to your date of hire. The Investment Plan effective date will be established as the first of the month following the month in which your enrollment is processed by the Plan Choice Administrator or the date you default to the Investment Plan. From your date of hire until the effective date, employee and employer contributions will be paid into your Investment Plan account at the blended contribution rate. From your effective date forward, contributions will be paid into your Investment Plan account at the Investment Plan contribution rate in effect at the time the contributions are made.


    Your enrollment period will end at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time, on the last business day of the eighth month following your month of hire. Your initial election will be considered your initial choice or first election. If you do not make an active plan election you will automatically enrolled (or default) in the appropriate plan based on your membership class. This automatic enrollment (or default) is considered your initial choice or first election. If you default you will be automatically be enrolled based on the below:

    Membership Class Plan Default
    Special Risk Class Pension Plan
    All classes (except Special Risk Class) Investment Plan
  • Can we choose between the two retirement plans every year, like we can for annual health care plan enrollment?

    No. You will have one opportunity to choose between the two plans during your initial choice period. After your initial choice period, you may exercise a second and final opportunity to change your plan at any time during your active FRS career.

  • Can I cancel a retirement plan election once it has been made?

    The State Board of Administration of Florida (SBA) will consider, on a case-by-case whether the election will be voided, subject to the following requirements:

    • If you elected the FRS Investment Plan. FRS Pension Plan, or FRS Hybrid Option - You must notify the SBA, Alight Solutions, EY, or the Division of Retirement by telephone, email, or written correspondence that you want to cancel your election no later than the last business day of the month following the election month. For example, if you make your election on March 13 you must notify one of the above entities that you want to cancel your election prior to the last business day of April.
    • If you defaulted into the FRS Pension Plan or Investment Plan (i.e., did not make an active election) you cannot cancel this default election.

    If your request to void the election is made timely and the SBA agrees the election will be voided, you will be required to sign a release and return it to the SBA prior to the election being officially voided. You will acknowledge in the release that failure to return a signed release by the requested due date will result in the original election's being reinstated. You will have until your choice period deadline date to make a new election. If your choice period has ended, you will have one calendar month to make a new election. Failure to make a new election will result in your defaulting into the Investment Plan, or Pension Plan (if filling a Special Risk position).

  • If I die during the Choice period and have not made a choice, is my beneficiary eligible to make a choice for me?

    No. You will remain in the Pension Plan, and your beneficiary may be entitled to receive a survivor benefit payment, if he is eligible under that plan.

  • If I am in the Investment Plan or Investment Plan hybrid option and use my second choice opportunity to buy back into the Pension Plan, can I participate in the DROP?

    Yes, if you still meet the eligibility criteria for DROP participation. Once you buy back your Pension Plan benefit, you are no longer in the Investment Plan. You are a member of the Pension Plan and are entitled to the full benefits of that plan.

  • Is there a financial penalty if I enroll in the Investment Plan and later decide to switch to the Pension Plan?

    No. There's no penalty, but you may need to "buy back" into the Pension Plan. (See the chart below.) This "buy back" cost could make transferring to the Pension Plan unaffordable. If you are an eligible employee who transferred a present-value amount to the Investment Plan as your opening account balance, the total amount you'll need to buy back into the plan is the "present value" of your accumulated benefit in the Pension Plan, assuming all your service had been in that plan. If you did not transfer an opening account balance, your "buy-back" amount will be the total cost of the benefit under the Pension Plan. Your cost to buy into the Pension Plan will be calculated as of the first day of the month following Alight Solutions' receipt of the election form. Remember, you can switch only once after you make your initial choice. The following chart shows what you can and cannot do regarding switching your choice.

    If... Then...
    Your total balance in the Investment Plan is greater than the "buy-back" amount... Your Investment Plan balance will be reduced by the "buy-back" amount; the rest will stay in the Investment Plan. You will have a benefit in both plans.
    Your Investment Plan balance is less than the "buy-back" amount and you still want to switch back... You must make up the difference out of your own money.
  • What is the "present value" of my Pension Plan benefit?

    The "present value" is the amount of money you would need to invest today to give you roughly the same monthly benefit you would have received from the Pension Plan. In figuring that amount, it's assumed that you terminate from the FRS today; begin drawing retirement benefits on your normal retirement date – the earlier of age 62 or 30 years of service, or the earlier of age 55 or 25 years of service for members of the Special Risk Class*; live an average life span; and received, if applicable, a cost-of-living increase during retirement.


    Present value is based only on your current FRS service to date and your current average final compensation. If you stay in the Pension Plan instead of switching to the Investment Plan, the value of your Pension Plan benefit will increase over time if you accumulate more service. If you switch to the Investment Plan – without transferring your Pension Plan benefit to the Investment Plan – and remain an inactive participant in the Pension Plan, the value of your Pension Plan benefit will be frozen. It will not increase over time as you accumulate service in the Investment Plan.


    *If initially hired on or after July 1, 2011, normal retirement is the earlier of age 65 or 33 years of service or the earlier of age 60 or 30 years of service for members of the Special Risk Class.

  • If I use my 2nd election to buy back into the Pension Plan and have money left over, what happens?

    Any money remaining after you buy back into the Pension Plan remains in the Investment Plan, so you actually participate in both plans. Once you're ready to retire and terminate employment, you don't have to take a distribution from both plans at the same time. However, you must begin receiving your Pension Plan benefit before you can start receiving your Investment Plan benefits. This means that you must be vested and eligible for a benefit under the Pension Plan to receive the remaining balance from your Investment Plan.

  • My work contract does not require me to work during the summer months. Can I still submit my 2nd Election Enrollment Form while on summer break?

    No. Under s. 121.021(17)(b), F.S., even though you may still have an employee/employer relationship, you are not earning service credit. You must be earning service credit and the Plan Choice Administrator must receive the enrollment form prior to beginning your summer break. If you submit your 2nd Election Enrollment Form or through the MyFRS.com website and you do not earn service credit in the month the form was received and/or the election is received after your termination date, your plan change will be reversed.


    Please note the portion of your contract salary withheld each month for payment during the summer months is considered salary earned during the school term and not service credit.

  • How will the present value of my current Pension Plan retirement benefit be determined?

    First, the Division of Retirement will calculate your present value using a formula developed by the Pension Plan's actuary, in accordance with Florida law. The FRS actuary annually evaluates whether the Pension Plan is adequately funded. The formula to compute your current benefit is:


    Years of Creditable Service X Percentage Value (depends on class of FRS membership) X Average Final Compensation (average of highest 8* years of salary) = Yearly Benefit at Normal Retirement Date

    After the Yearly Benefit at Normal Retirement Date is calculated, the Division projects the total yearly benefits collected during retirement over your expected lifetime (which may include a cost-of-living adjustment). This projection of increasing annual payments is converted to a single lump sum which is called a "present value" (value in today's dollars) using an actuarial conversion factor. This conversion factor is based on an interest rate and mortality tables specified by Florida Statutes. [It is not the amount of employer and employee contributions on deposit or the monthly benefit you would receive under the Pension Plan.] This conversion factor will increase monthly until you reach your normal retirement date and will decrease for each month after the normal retirement date.


    * If you have any Pension Plan service prior to July 1, 2011, your retirement benefit will be calculated based on your 5 highest years of pay, averaged.

  • If I switch to the Investment Plan, what happens to the benefit I've accumulated so far under the Pension Plan?

    There are two things you can do:


    1. Convert the present value of your Pension Plan benefit (your future benefit expressed in today's dollars) into the opening balance of your Investment Plan. Then, you'll get future employer contributions made to your Investment Plan account. At retirement, or when you leave FRS employment, you'll get a benefit only from the Investment Plan, paid in any available form you choose. To vest in your transferred Pension Plan benefit, you must complete 6 years of total creditable service (8 years if first enrolled in the FRS prior to July 1, 2011).
    2. OR
    3. If you have at least 5 years of FRS service (8 years if first enrolled in the FRS on or after July 1, 2011) at the start of your Choice period, you can leave your current Pension Plan benefit frozen where it is and let future contributions and benefits accumulate in the Investment Plan. Then, you'll receive retirement benefits in two ways: a monthly benefit from the Pension Plan (if you meet the Pension Plan vesting requirements) and an Investment Plan benefit paid in any available form you choose. This is known as the Hybrid Option.

    However, you cannot split the balance of your earned Pension Plan benefit between the two plans. You must either transfer the entire amount to the Investment Plan or leave the entire amount in the Pension Plan (if you have chosen the Hybrid Option).


    Any time after your Choice period ends (or after you join the Investment Plan, whichever is first), you can change your mind about your choice of plans once – but only once – during your FRS employment.

  • Can I use funds from my state 457 deferred compensation account to make up the difference I owe to buy back into the Pension Plan from the Investment Plan?

    Yes, funds from tax qualified plans (457b, 401a, 401k, 403b, 408a, and 408b) may be used to pay any shortfall in your buyback cost to join the Pension Plan.

  • If I am vested in the Pension Plan and have never used my one-time second election, and separate FRS employment but don't retire, do I still have my second choice opportunity available to me?

    Yes, you would still have your second choice opportunity available if you returned to FRS-covered employment.

  • If I enroll in the Hybrid Option, am I required to take a distribution from both the Pension Plan and the Investment Plan at the same time?

    No. The chart below shows your distribution options under the Hybrid Option, and what happens if you're rehired after you begin taking distributions from one or both plans.

    Your Distribution Options What Happens if You're Rehired
    You may take a distribution from the Pension Plan and Investment Plan at the same time. Renewed membership in the FRS is not available for retired members who are initially reemployed with an FRS-covered employer on or after July 1, 2010.
    You may take a distribution from the Pension Plan and delay distribution from the Investment Plan.* Renewed membership in the FRS is not available for retired members who are initially reemployed with an FRS-covered employer on or after July 1, 2010.
    You may take a distribution from the Investment Plan and delay distribution from the Pension Plan. Renewed membership in the FRS is not available for retired members who are initially reemployed with an FRS-covered employer on or after July 1, 2010.

    *If you're at least age 72, the IRS requires you to take minimum distributions from your Investment Plan account.

  • Can I join DROP if I choose the Investment Plan hybrid option?

    No. A member who chooses the hybrid option is considered an Investment Plan member and not eligible to join DROP.

  • How long do I need to work before I own the employee contributions in my account?

    You are always fully vested in your own contributions as long as you remain in the plan you initially elected. There is no period of time you must work to own your employee contributions. If you use your second election, your employee contributions will be reset to zero beginning with your effective date, and you will begin accruing employee contributions after your effective date.

  • How does this choice affect the vesting of my retirement plan benefit?

    If you stay in the Pension Plan, you are subject to an 8-year* vesting requirement. If you transfer to the Investment Plan and have an opening account balance based on previous pension plan service, your Pension Plan benefit (whether you transfer it as in the 100% Transfer Option or freeze it as in the Hybrid Option) will be vested after 8 years.* You will be vested after 1 year of total service for all future employer contributions in your Investment Plan account. You are always fully vested in your own contributions, as long as you remain enrolled in the plan you initially elect. How your employee contributions are distributed or refunded to you depends on a number of factors, especially if you use your 2nd Election to switch plans.


    Any Pension Plan or Investment Plan service counts toward both of these vesting requirements. For example, if you had 7 years of FRS Pension Plan service and decided to switch to the Investment Plan, here's how the vesting rules would apply:

    • You would be vested in the Pension Plan part of your benefit after 1 year of additional service (whether you transfer it or freeze it), because then you would have 8 years (7+1) of total FRS service.
    • You would be immediately vested in all future contributions into your Investment Plan account because you already have 7 years of service, which more than satisfies your one-year vesting requirement in the Investment Plan.

    *Members who have previous FRS service credit prior to July 1, 2011 are subject to a 6-year vesting requirement.

  • What is vesting?

    Under a retirement plan, vesting means the assurance that a member is eligible to receive a future benefit upon completing required years of creditable service. For the FRS Investment Plan, if you have completed one year of service with an FRS employer, you are vested in (or, you own) all contributions and earnings on those contributions.


    If you leave FRS-covered employment before you're vested in your Investment Plan benefit, you won't be entitled to any benefit other than the distribution of your employee contributions. If you request a distribution of your employee contributions, you will be considered a retiree of the FRS and forfeit all unvested employer contributions and earnings.


    If you leave FRS-covered employment after vesting in your Investment Plan benefit, but before your transferred Pension Plan benefit has vested (6 or 8 years depending on date initially hired), you may only receive your vested employee and employer contributions plus earnings paid after your transfer to the Investment Plan. However, if you take any distribution from your Investment Plan benefit, the Pension Plan benefit you transferred into the Investment Plan will be forfeited.


    These vesting requirements are established by the Florida Legislature and included in the Florida Statutes. They are subject to change.

  • What happens to my benefit under the Investment Plan if I leave FRS employment before vesting in my benefit but I later return to FRS employment?

    You are immediately vested in your employee contributions as long as you remain in the plan that you elect. You will be vested in your employer contributions and earnings on those contributions when you complete one year of service with a participating FRS employer. If you transferred a benefit from the FRS Pension Plan, you must meet the vesting requirements of the Pension Plan for that service. If you terminate FRS-covered employment before completing one year of service, you will not be eligible to receive a benefit from the FRS Investment Plan, other than receipt of your employee contributions paid while a member of the Investment Plan. The balance in your account will be placed in a suspense account for up to five years (invested in the FRS Core Plus Bond Fund (310)). If you return to FRS-covered employment within this 5-year period, the balance in the suspense account, plus accrued earnings, will be returned to your account. If you do not return to FRS-covered employment within the 5-year period, you will forfeit the balance represented by your employer contributions. If you take your employee contributions you will forfeit the balance paid by your employer. If you take a distribution of any amount from the FRS Investment Plan, you are considered retired and will not be eligible for certain FRS benefits should you return to FRS-covered employment in the future.

  • Do FRS Investment Plan funds pay dividends and interest income?

    Yes, but the institutional and commingled investment funds available to you in the Investment Plan treat dividend and interest income somewhat differently than if you held a mutual fund within a taxable account.


    In a taxable account, as part of the process of trading securities within a fund, there will be short and long-term capital gains generated, as well as income from interest-bearing securities, and these are distributed to the investor when paid out. In a taxable account, an investor has the ability to decide whether to have the income paid, or to use the additional dividends and interest to purchase additional shares or units of the fund. When dividends and interest are paid to the investor, it represents a loss of income for the fund, and the share price is reduced, accordingly. The investor will have to pay taxes on these distributions and they may be taxed at ordinary income tax or long-term capital gains rates.


    The fund shares held by members in any of the FRS Investment Plan fund offerings, or any tax-deferred retirement savings plan, are held under a mechanism called an "omnibus account". The "owner" of the omnibus account is the FRS Investment Plan. When the funds receive income from realized gains, dividends, and interest income, this stream of income is reflected in the share or unit price on a daily basis. As opposed to a mutual fund's distribution of dividends, which has the effect of reducing the net asset value (the price per share of the fund), the pass-through of income into the FRS Investment Plan fund offerings will have the effect of increasing the unit value since income is added into the fund, rather than being distributed to investors. This increased value is reflected in the daily share price shown in the funds and in your account balance. When you take a distribution from the FRS Investment Plan at retirement, the net asset value of the fund will reflect all gains, qualified dividends, and interest income earned during the time you were invested in the fund.

  • How often can I change my investments under the Investment Plan?

    Once contributions are in your account, you can generally change the way your account balance is invested on a daily basis, except that foreign and global investment funds are subject to a minimum holding period of 7 calendar days following any non-exempt transfers into such funds and you may be subject to trading controls on other funds in the event that you are trading excessively. More information on these restrictions is available by calling the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line or reviewing the "Excessive Fund Trading Guidelines"

  • I don't have any experience or interest in managing an investment account. If I choose the Investment Plan, are there resources that will simplify this task, or even do it for me?

    Yes. We provide several resources to assist you to determine if the Investment Plan is the right plan for you. The CHOICE SERVICE, available on MyFRS.com and through the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line 1-866-446-9377, offers personalized assistance in comparing the benefits under both plans. The MyFRS Financial Guidance Line also offers free one-on-one financial counseling by phone. Once you're in the Investment Plan, the ADVISOR SERVICE will help you with guidance on your portfolio. If you don't want to manage or monitor the investments in your account, the Investment Plan includes ten Retirement Date Funds. These funds invest in a diversified portfolio of other FRS Investment Plan funds and use an asset allocation concept called "target date funds." The mix of funds in each Retirement Date Fund is based on the amount of time you have before retirement, and the mix gradually changes as your retirement gets nearer. This gradual change follows a careful investment strategy called a "glide path." These funds are also low-cost. That means more of the funds' investment earnings stay in your account rather than go to the companies that manage the funds' investments. If you enroll in the Investment Plan and you do not select any investment funds, you will be automatically defaulted to an appropriate Retirement Date Fund based on your current age.

  • Can I buy individual stocks in the FRS Investment Plan?

    Yes. The Self-Directed Brokerage Account (SDBA) allows you to invest in thousands of different investment options in addition to the Investment Plan's primary investment funds. To participate in the SDBA you must maintain a minimum balance of $5,000 in the Investment Plan's primary investment funds and initial and subsequent transfers into the SDBA must be at least $1,000. An SDBA is for experienced investors and is not suitable for all members. There are risks associated with many of the investments in the SDBA and you assume the full risk and responsibility for the investments you select. Additional information on SDBA's is available online in the Investment Funds section.

  • Could I lose all my retirement money if I make poor investment choices under the Investment Plan?

    Based on long-term U.S. historical data, that's not likely, especially since the investment funds are diversified and the FRS monitors their performance. However, you do have risks when investing and the level of these risks will fluctuate from time to time.


    The two best things to do to help reduce these risks are to diversify your money across the various asset classes and take the long-term view. Invest in different kinds of investment funds that behave differently at different points in the economic cycle. Additional information on the investment funds is available online in the Investment Funds section. Adopt a disciplined, long-term approach to investing. When you invest for the long term (ten years or longer), you have plenty of time to weather market ups and downs and still gain over time. If you have questions about selecting investment funds in the Investment Plan, call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 2.

  • If I choose the Investment Plan but don't select the funds in which I want my account invested, how is
    my plan account invested?

    Your account balance will be invested automatically in an age-appropriate retirement date fund. You may also use the EZ Enrollment Form, which has this feature. Your account balance would initially be invested in an age-appropriate retirement date fund and will remain invested until you decide to change the allocations to other funds.

  • How can I use Quicken or Mint to manage my account?

    You can download your retirement plan account information to either of two popular personal financial management software packages - Quicken® or Mint® (Windows and Mac versions). At your command, an automated link feeds current (prior business day close), accurate data - including balances and transactions - to the program you're using. With this timesaving capability, you can plan and make decisions viewing all your investment information at once.

    All you need to get started for this one-time set-up is a copy of Quicken® or an account set up on Mint.com and the following:

    • Login ID - Your Login ID for Quicken/Mint is your Social Security number, a hyphen, and "14470" (this is the company ID). For example, if your Social Security number was 123456789, the format of the Login ID would be 123456789-14470.
    • PIN - Your PIN is the 6 digit number sent to you by the FRS in your New Hire Kit (if you need a PIN reminder mailed to you, please call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 4). Please note that your PIN is different than the password you use to log on to MyFRS.com.

    If you have questions about set-up procedures, you can use the program's Help feature or you can call the toll-free MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 4, to connect to the Investment Plan Administrator, Alight Solutions.

  • Why doesn't the Investment Plan offer the same mutual funds I already invest in on my own?

    The Investment Plan offers a wide choice of funds in many asset classes - 19 funds in all, which is about the same number of options typically offered in a large private-sector 401(k)-type plan. The investment funds offered under the Investment Plan were selected for their proven performance and their relatively low expense ratio (the percentage of assets participants pay for choosing that fund). Some of the funds are what are called institutional funds, which are funds that have been created by the investment management companies specifically for retirement plans or wealthy individuals at wholesale cost. You may not have seen these funds in your normal market place because they are not available to the retail public.


    In addition, a Self-Directed Brokerage Account (SDBA) is available. The SDBA allows you to invest in thousands of different investment options in addition to the Investment Plan's primary investment funds. To participate in the SDBA you must maintain a minimum balance of $5,000 in the Investment Plan's primary investment funds and initial and subsequent transfers into the SDBA must be at least $1,000. An SDBA is for experienced investors and is not suitable for all members. There are risks associated with many of the investments in the SDBA and you assume the full risk and responsibility for the investments you select. Additional information on SDBA's is available online in the Investment Funds section.

  • What investment funds are offered under the Investment Plan?

    The Plan offers a combination of low-cost, institutionally managed funds, and brand name mutual funds. Additional information is available online in the Investment Funds section.

  • What is a Unit Value or Unit Price?

    A "unit value" is similar to a share price for an individual stock or mutual fund. Each day the dollar value of the securities held in each fund is determined after the market closes. The total dollar value is divided by the accumulated units in the fund and the result is the "unit value" for the forthcoming day.

  • How did the FRS choose the investment options for the Investment Plan?

    The options were selected through a competitive bid process and provide highly diversified and cost-effective investment options (the FRS Funds) that allow you to choose appropriate levels of risk through asset allocation (the mix of stocks versus bonds versus cash) and specialty products (e.g., U.S. stock fund and an inflation protection fund). A copy of the Investment Plan's Investment Policy Statement, which discusses the selection of investment options, is available on the MyFRS.com website under the "Plan Information/Trustee Reports" section.

  • Does the Investment Plan charge administrative fees in addition to the management fees charged by fund managers?

    Yes, but only for inactive Investment Plan members. Inactive Investment Plan participants whose account balances are over $1,000 will pay a $6 quarterly account maintenance fee. This fee addresses the administrative costs of the Investment Plan. More information on fees is available in the Annual Fee Disclosure Statement available in the Investment Funds section on MyFRS.com.

  • Can the investment funds in the Investment Plan decrease in value?

    Yes. None of the funds in the Investment Plan are guaranteed.


    Section 121.4501(15), Florida Statutes, incorporates the federal law concept of fiduciary responsibility on the part of the Trustees of the SBA, codified at 29 U.S.C. 1104(a)(1)(A)-(C), and also incorporates the federal law concept of participant control, established by regulations of the U.S. Department of Labor under Section 404(c) of ERISA.


    Under the concept of fiduciary responsibility, the Trustees of the SBA shall ensure that investment of FRS Investment Plan assets shall be made for the sole interest and exclusive purpose of providing benefits to Plan participants and beneficiaries and defraying reasonable expenses of administering the Plan.


    Under the concept of participant control, if you, as a participant, exercise control over your assets in the FRS Investment Plan, pursuant to Section 404(c) regulations and all applicable laws governing the operation of the FRS Investment Plan, no program fiduciary shall be liable for any loss to your account that may result from your exercise of that control.

  • Why does the Investment Plan include some investment funds that I've never heard of?

    The funds in the Investment Plan are mixes of privately managed funds created specifically for the Investment Plan. These are called "white label funds". Creating white label funds specific to a particular retirement plan is very cost-effective, and commonly done by large retirement plans. Plan trustees hire premier specialist companies to meet specific requirements at costs that are often a fraction of buying investment products and services off-the-shelf in the retail market. For the Investment Plan, experienced specialist investment companies have been hired. These specialists typically provide services only to pension funds, endowments, mutual funds or the very wealthy. As a result, you have access to some of the best money managers at a fraction of the cost you would pay for similar funds outside the Investment Plan.

  • I'm just in one fund. Why is my "Your Personal Rate of Return" different from the fund's performance?

    "Your Personal Rate of Return" includes any activity in your account involving the funds you are investing in throughout the quarter (or statement period). For example, contributions or fund transfers. Conventional fund performance looks at a single fund only on the first and last days of the quarter. The calculation used in Alight Solutions' "Your Personal Rate of Return" calculation is a commonly accepted calculation used by the financial services industry. The year-to-date (YTD) "Your Personal Rate of Return" is based on the performance of your investments from the first of the calendar year to the end of the statement period
    Example I
    Let's use a simple portfolio as an example. Suppose you have a portfolio of one share of XYZ stock. At the beginning of the quarter the stock price is $10. No changes are made to the account during the quarter, and at the end of the quarter, the stock price is $9. This means that the stock, and also your portfolio, had a return of negative 10% (i.e., -10%) for that quarter.
    Example II
    At the beginning of the quarter you owned the same share of XYZ stock, again with a starting price of $10. You purchase a second share of XYZ stock in the middle of the quarter, at a price of $11. Again, the stock price at the end of the quarter is $9. The return of the stock, measured from day 1 to day 91 is negative 10% (i.e., -10%). The return of the portfolio, however, will be different from that of the stock because of the activity of the account. Since the purchase in during the quarter was at a higher price than the ending price, the portfolio performance is worse. In this case, "Your Personal Rate of Return" is negative 14.3% (i.e., -14.3%). If the purchase during the quarter had been at a price lower than the ending price, the performance of the portfolio would have been better than that of the stock. This is a simple example, but it does show how activity during a quarter can influence performance.

  • What are investment earnings?

    Investment earnings are the increase in the value of your account that comes from an increase in the price of your investments and an increase in the value of reinvested earnings in your account. Keep in mind that investment earnings may not keep pace with inflation (the cost-of-living). This is especially true when it comes to investments with lower short-term risk, like stable value and bond funds. Also keep in mind that investment fund fees are charged as a percent of your account. These fees will reduce your investment earnings. For example, with an investment fund that has a 0.50% annual fee, that fee will eat up about 15% of your money in that fund over 30 years. However, the fees charged by the investment funds in the Investment Plan are generally low when compared with fees charged by investment funds in other public sector defined contribution retirement plans. More information on fees is available in the Annual Fee Disclosure Statement available in the Investment Funds section on MyFRS.com

  • If I choose the Investment Plan, can I transfer my entire accrued Pension Plan benefit into one set of investment
    funds and my future employer contributions to another set of funds?

    No. When you initially choose the Investment Plan, you must elect to transfer your entire Pension Plan benefit and all future contributions into the same investment fund selections. However, you could elect to change your allocation for future contributions immediately after your account has been funded so that future contributions could be directed to other investment funds.

  • Aren't the contribution rates different in the Pension Plan than in the Investment Plan? Does this mean one plan will provide a
    lower retirement benefit?

    No. The amount of employee and employer contributions made to the Pension Plan Trust Fund does not affect or determine the amount of your Pension Plan benefit; your benefit is determined by the plan's fixed or defined benefit formula. That formula guarantees your benefit amount regardless of the contributions you and your employer makes to the Trust Fund or how the Trust Fund's investments perform.


    However, under the Investment Plan, the contributions paid by you and your employer to your plan account do determine your retirement benefit. These contributions, plus the investment earnings on these contributions when invested (less any expenses or fees), will determine the amount of your retirement benefit.

  • What are the contribution rates for the Investment Plan and Pension Plan?

    Employees and employers pay the same contribution rate regardless of whether a member is in the Pension Plan or the Investment Plan (called a "blended contribution rate").


    The blended rate, which is the rate actually paid by employers and employees, changes yearly. See the latest contribution rates.

    The following chart shows the rate actually paid into an Investment Plan member's account:

    Membership Class Paid by Employee Paid by Employer
    Regular Class 3.00% 3.30%
    Special Risk Class 3.00% 11.00%
    Special Risk Administrative Support Class 3.00% 4.95%
    Elected Officers' Class- (Judges) 3.00% 10.23%
    Elected Officers' Class - (Legislature/
    Cabinet/Public Defender/State Attorney)
    3.00% 6.38%
    Elected Officers' Class -(County and Local) 3.00% 8.34%
    Senior Management Service Class 3.00% 4.67%
  • What happens if my employer submits contributions late?

    Retirement contributions are required to be submitted by employers no later than the 5th business day of the month following the month wages were earned. If these contributions are not received by the due date, the employer will be will be charged a 1% per month delinquency assessment.


    In addition, any contributions received after the due date for an Investment plan member will also be charged for market losses, if any, and an administrative charge for the Plan Administrator for calculating the loss.

  • What does "blended contribution rate" mean and how will my retirement benefit be affected under both plans?

    The blended contribution rate legislation was passed by the legislature and became effective on July 1, 2002. The, uniform employer contribution rate is paid on behalf of each employee, regardless of plan, based on percentage of pay and FRS membership class. The blended contribution rate only affects the amount your employer contributes to the Pension Plan and the Investment Plan. It does not change your benefit amount under the Pension Plan or the percentage of salary contributed to your Investment Plan account. Nor does it affect how much you may contribute. The Florida Legislature can increase or decrease the amount you or your employer contribute to your account at any time.

  • Can future funding increases impact future contributions and benefit levels?

    During years when the Pension Plan is determined to be less than 100% actuarially funded, the Florida Legislature may take steps to improve the funding level by increasing employee or employer contributions or lower plan costs by reducing future Pension Plan benefits.


    Pension Plan underfunding or future cost increases to fund the FRS may make it necessary for the Florida Legislature to lower the amount that employers contribute to Investment Plan members accounts or increase the amount that employees contribute to their Investment Plan accounts.

  • Will my employee contributions earn interest?

    Employee contributions in the Investment Plan will accumulate earnings, minus investment fees and administrative charges. Employee contributions in the Pension Plan will not earn interest.

  • Are employee contributions paid before or after taxes?

    Employee contributions are paid on a pretax basis. Your salary will be reduced by the amount of the employee contribution before determining the federal income tax deduction.

  • How should required employee contributions be reported on an employee's Form W-2?

    See the Tax Advice Disclaimer below.* The FRS requires all members to contribute 3% employee contributions. These contributions, as required by s. 121.71(2), Florida Statutes, are treated for tax purposes as employer-paid employee contributions (commonly called an employer pick-up) under Internal Revenue Code section 414(h)(2).** Consequently, these contributions are not included in an employee’s pay when calculating income on Form W-2 (that is, they are not included in Box 1). Instead, they should be reported on Form W-2 in Box 14-Other. These contributions should be labeled as “FRS 414(h) Employee Contributions". These contributions are reported to the IRS for informational purposes and are not reported as income on an employee’s tax return (does not have any effect on an employee's wages for income tax purposes). Because the employee contribution is included in wages for purposes of FICA, it is included in Box 3 (Social Security wages) and Box 5 (Medicare wages) of the W-2.


    In summary, the employee contributions should be reported on Form W-2 as follows:

    • Box 1 - Code section 414(h)(2) "pick-up" contributions are not included in the amount reported in Box 1 of Form W-2 because they are considered under Code section 414(h)(2) to be "employer contributions" and thus not included in an employee's wages - this treatment is regardless of whether the employer makes the contributions or whether the employee contributes through a payroll reduction contribution.
    • Box 3 - The employee contribution is included in wages for purposes of FICA so it should be included in Box 3 (Social Security wages) of Form W-2.
    • Box 5 - The employee contribution is included in wages for purposes of FICA so it should be included in Box 5 (Medicare wages) of Form W-2.
    • Box 12 - Even though the employer "pick-up" contributions are pre-tax, they are not reported in Box 12 because they are not employee contributions, but are technically considered employer contributions under Code section 414(h)(2), even though they reduce the employee's salary. Please see IRS publication 2011 Instructions for Forms W-2 and W-3, pages 9 and 10, which provides that "required employee contributions" (which would include Code section 414(h)(2) employer pick-up contributions) may be reported in Box 14, but not Box 12, as follows:
      • "The following are not elective deferrals and may be reported in Box 14, but not in box 12 .... Required employee contributions."
      • "Do not report in Box 12 section 414(h)(2) contributions (relating to certain state or local government plans). Instead, use Box 14 for these items and any other information that you wish to give to your employee."
    • Box 14-Other Employee contributions should be reported in Box 14-Other, labeled as "FRS 414(h) Employee Contributions."

    *TAX ADVICE DISCLAIMER: Although the information provided above is presented in good faith and believed to be correct, it is General in nature and is not intended as tax advice. You may want to obtain the advice and guidance of a professional Tax Adviser prior to any actual transaction. The FRS assumes no obligation to inform any member or agency of any changes in the tax law or other factors that could affect the information contained above.


    ** Code section 414(h)(2) states: in the case of any plan established by the government of any State ... where the contributions of employing units are designated as employee contributions but where any employing unit picks up the contributions, the contributions so picked up shall be treated as employer contributions.

  • Do all Pension Plan and Investment Plan members have to pay 3% employee contributions?

    Yes.

  • If I terminate employment can I leave my employee contributions on deposit?

    If you are a Pension Plan member, you can leave your employee contributions on deposit indefinitely. Interest will not be earned on these contributions.


    If you are an Investment Plan member, you can leave your employee contributions on deposit. Any unvested employer contributions will be moved to a suspense account for up to 5 years. If you do not return to FRS-covered employment within 5 years, the unvested employer contributions and service associated with those contributions will be forfeited. If your vested employee contributions on deposit are greater than $1,000 at the time the unvested contributions are moved into a suspense account you may keep them on deposit in the Investment Plan. If your vested employee contributions on deposit are $1,000 or less, the Investment Plan Administrator will automatically distribute the balance to you (a de minimis distribution). If you receive a de minimis distribution, you will not be considered a reemployed retiree and will not be subject to the limitations applicable to such employees. If you receive a de minimis distribution and return to FRS-covered employment in the future, you will be placed back in the Investment Plan and earn additional service credit.

  • Will employer contributions to the Investment Plan be reduced in the future?

    Future actions of the Legislature cannot be predicted or guaranteed with respect to prospective pension policies. The amount of employee and employer contributions to both the Investment Plan and the Pension Plan are determined by legislation. In future years, the Legislature could reduce or increase employee and/or employer contributions to either or both plans.

  • Why is the retirement contribution percentage higher for those employees in the Special Risk Class?

    The Legislature determined that certain employees have unique job functions that put them at special risk. Due to the intense physical and emotional demands of their job, they would likely spend fewer years at work earning a retirement benefit than does a regular FRS employee. Eligible positions include such personnel as law enforcement officers, firefighters, correctional officers, emergency medical technicians and paramedics. These jobs are performed in dangerous work environments where a greater chance exists of on-the-job injury or disability leading to retirement. To compensate these employees for their dedication and service, it was decided by the Legislature to increase their contribution percentage under the various retirement plan options and to allow Special Risk Class members to retire at an earlier age.

  • Can I contribute 3% to another savings plan (IRA, deferred compensation plan, etc.) instead of to the FRS?

    No. You may make optional contributions to other savings plans; however, the 3% employee contribution is mandatory for the FRS.

  • Can I receive a loan or hardship withdrawal of my employee contributions?

    No.

  • Will reemployed retirees have to pay the 3% employee contribution?

    Reemployed retirees of both the Pension Plan and the Investment Plan initially reemployed by an FRS employer prior to July 1, 2010 and reemployed retirees of the Investment Plan reemployed on or after July 1, 2017 are required to make the 3% employee contribution since they are permitted renewed membership in the FRS. Reemployed retirees initially reemployed by an FRS employer on or after July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2017 were not required to make the 3% employee contributions since they were not allowed renewed membership in the FRS.

  • How long do I need to work before I own the employee contributions in my account?

    You are always fully vested in your own contributions. There is no period of time you must work to own your employee contributions.

  • Can I contribute my own money to my Investment Plan account?

    All FRS Investment Plan and Pension Plan members (except those in DROP) contribute 3% of their pay, pretax employee contributions. You are not permitted to make any additional employee contributions above the 3% to your retirement account. Your employer contributes the majority of your retirement savings. The Investment Plan also accepts rollovers from other qualified retirement plans (i.e., 401(k), traditional IRA, 403(b), 457 plans, etc.). Note: Once you roll over eligible retirement monies into the FRS Investment Plan, you cannot receive any distributions of these funds (or your Investment Plan account balance) until you terminate employment for 3 calendar months. You may be eligible to withdraw up to 10% of your Investment Plan account balance one calendar month following the month of your termination if you meet the normal retirement requirements for the FRS Investment Plan.

  • What day each month will retirement contributions post to my Investment Plan account?

    Your employer is required to submit employee and employer retirement contributions and accompanying payroll data to the Division of Retirement by the 5th business day of each month following the month in which the salary is paid. Upon receipt, the Division verifies that the contributions submitted are correct. If correct, the Division forwards the contributions to your Investment Plan account as soon as administratively possible. The contributions should be posted to your Investment Plan account no later than the 15th of the month. If the contributions submitted are not correct, the Division of Retirement will contact your employer and determine the correct contributions due. Once these are determined and your employer submits corrected contributions (if applicable), the contributions will be forwarded to your Investment Plan account.


    If your employer does not submit retirement contributions and/or accompanying payroll data timely and they are received after the 5th business day of the month, your employer will be charged a 1% per month delinquency assessment. In addition, any contributions received after the month they were due will also be charged market losses, if any. Your pro rata share of the 1% delinquency assessment and any market losses you experienced will be deposited in your Investment Plan account to make up for the delayed contributions and any investment returns you could have gained had the money been in your account.

  • Does overtime pay affect the contribution amount to my Investment Plan account?

    Overtime pay is included in the definition of compensation for the Investment Plan (and Pension Plan). The percentage you and your employer contribute remains the same; however, the actual dollar amount contributed to your account is based on your higher pay for that month.

  • What FAQs are available from the Division of Retirement for Pension Plan members, DROP members, and employers?
  • Will the education and counseling firms continue to provide services after I make my plan choice? Will they
    be allowed to sell services, like tax preparation?

    The education program providing retirement planning support and investment education and guidance is intended to remain in place indefinitely for all active FRS members, whether in the Pension Plan or the Investment Plan. However, the types of services they provide will expand after you make your plan choice. The education firms are expressly forbidden from soliciting employees for the purposes of selling services or investment products. They are also not allowed to receive fees or revenue from investment companies in the program that are in any way related to the education firms' recommendations.

  • How does one-on-one financial counseling work? How much does it cost?

    During your Choice period and beyond, you can call the toll-free MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 2, for one-on-one assistance and guidance. The financial planner who assists you will have access to the same online CHOICE SERVICE information you do and, if you are not a new hire, they will have access to your personalized Benefit Comparison Statement too. The planner can respond to your questions and help you decide what's right for you. There is no charge for the telephone service. Additionally, you will have access to the ADVISOR SERVICE providing you with helpful information on your retirement outlook and offering personalized investment guidance on your retirement savings.

  • How can I change my name or mailing address if retired or terminated from the Investment Plan?

    You can make these changes as follows:

    • You can make an address change online (name changes cannot be made online). Click here for further details.
    • You can request a name change form by calling the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line toll-free at 1-866-446-9377 and selecting Option 4 for Investment Plan Administrator. You will need to complete and sign a form, and mail it (P.O. Box 785027, Orlando, FL 32878-5027) or fax it (1-888-310-5559) to Investment Plan Administrator along with any required supporting documentation.
    • Instead of a name change form, you can mail (PO Box 785027, Orlando, FL 32878-5027) or fax (1-888-310-5559) a letter to the Investment Plan Administrator. The letter must include:
      • Your Social Security number;
      • A copy of the court order changing your name;
      • A copy of your Marriage Certificate reflecting your new name; or
      • A copy of your driver's license issued after January 1, 2010, that indicates compliance with the federal REAL ID Act reflecting your new name

  • I called the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line and spoke with an EY financial planner who was friendly
    and very helpful. When I call again, how can I speak with the same person?

    When you call again, just ask for the financial planner by name and you'll be connected with him or her. If that person is unavailable when you call, he or she will call you back. If you would like to speak with a different person, a record of your previous conversation will be available to the financial planner who answers your call. Remember, the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line 1-866-446-9377 (or TRS 711) is available to take your call from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday, except holidays.

  • Will the FRS continue to provide services after I make my plan choice?

    Yes. You will continue to have access to the Advisor Service, Choice Service, and EY will continue to provide education and counseling services.

  • What educational resources are available to help me learn about my retirement plan choice and both retirement plans?

    Educational services are being provided to all FRS members through the MyFRS Financial Guidance line - and, it's free. The planners and counselors on the line can help you understand the:

    • difference between the two FRS plans;
    • importance of retirement planning and anticipating future income needs; and
    • basics of investing and how to be an effective long-term investor.

    Independent, experienced financial education firms are providing the services for this program. These firms - GuidedChoice and EY - are not connected with either retirement plan and do not sell investment or insurance products, so there's no potential conflict of interest. Under the FRS, you can receive financial information in many different ways, including:

    • A New Hire Kit explains your plan options, plan election deadline, and your MyFRS.com PIN. This statement will be sent to your home address.
    • The CHOICE SERVICE, an Internet-based service that lets you see what your future benefit would be under both plans, using a variety of different assumptions. The CHOICE SERVICE will also help you determine which investment funds are best suited for you.
    • One-on-one plan choice support and investment guidance via the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line - a toll-free phone number for all FRS members: 1-866-446-9377 or TRS 711.
    • MyFRS.com Web site, your online source where you can find everything you need to know about the plans and the investment funds, including the CHOICE SERVICE, frequently asked questions, copies of all print materials and more detailed material, if you'd like.

    After your Choice period ends - the program expands to include:

    • Online ADVISOR® SERVICE, available on this Web site, to help you create a comprehensive financial plan for retirement;
    • Additional guidance regarding your second chance to switch plans through the CHOICE SERVICE; and
    • Ongoing on-site employee workshops each year on a variety of financial topics, such as Retirement Planning and Investment Planning.
  • How did the FRS select the education firms that are communicating the retirement plan options, and
    how do we know that they are not biased?

    The FRS conducted a comprehensive competitive bidding process with the assistance of outside consultants. Numerous education firms submitted written proposals in response to a formal request for proposal. After the list of prospective vendors was narrowed down, selected finalists made in-person presentations and presented samples of their proposed strategies and educational materials. After the FRS carefully reviewed the proposals, the most qualified firms were selected. The contracts with these firms prohibits them from selling any involved products or from having a relationship with firms in the plan who offer investment products. These contractors are subject to rebid every 5-7 years.

  • Which State agency is responsible for administering the Investment Plan?

    Plans/Programs Agency Responsibility
    Investment Plan State Board of Administration
    • Provides day-to-day administration and oversight.
    • Selects private sector investment firms to provide investment funds
    • Selects a private sector third-party administrator to maintain Investment Plan employee account records
    Division of Retirement
    • Processes employee and employer payroll contributions for the Investment Plan
    • Maintains membership records and administers the disability program, Health Insurance Subsidy Program (HIS), vesting, present value transfer calculation, and second-opportunity "buy-back" cost calculation

  • I am a member of the Investment Plan and plan to retire in about 6 months. Will I continue to have access
    to the online ADVISOR SERVICE once I begin taking periodic distributions from my account?

    Investment Plan members will still have access to the ADVISOR SERVICE as long as there is a balance greater than $1,000. You will also have access to the financial planners at the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line so long as you retain an account balance of $1,000 or more.

  • How do I change my user profile information once I've made my choice?

    To change your user profile, you must be logged into MyFRS.com website using your existing user ID and password (if you do not have a user ID and password you must first register on the site using your PIN). Once you are logged in, just click on the 'My Profile' button located in the drop down box on the top right side of the page. From this page, you can change your user profile.

  • How do I change my PIN once I receive my Retirement Choice Kit?

    You can change your PIN either by phone or online once you have received your New Employee FRS Enrollment Kit containing your provided PIN information. To change your PIN by phone, call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line toll-free at 1-866-446-9377, Option 4. To change your PIN online, you must first register on the MyFRS.com website by creating a unique user ID and password. Next, log in using your user ID and password, and click on the 'My Profile' button located in the drop down box on the top right side of the page. Near the bottom of the new page you will see a link to a form allowing you to submit and confirm a new PIN. Your new PIN will be activated immediately.

  • What do I do if I lose or forget my PIN?

    If you are having trouble logging into the MyFRS.com website, you can visit the MyFRS.com login problems page. On this page, you can troubleshoot to see if you have an existing user profile. If you have never set up a user profile or need your PIN, you can request a PIN reminder either by phone or online.

    To request a PIN reminder by phone, call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line toll-free at 1-866-446-9377, Option 4.

    To request a PIN reminder online, click here.

    A PIN reminder letter will be mailed to you at the postal address on file and will arrive in 7-10 business days. The letter can only be sent by postal mail. If you request a PIN reminder, you will be required to complete Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) to access your account, even if you have previously authenticated your account.

  • Whom do I contact if I have problems on the site?

    If you are having trouble finding information on this site, Contact Us. We're here to help. By calling the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line toll-free at 1-866-446-9377, you'll have access to experts who can answer all your questions about retirement planning, the FRS retirement plans, and managing your finances. This free service to all FRS members is a one-point source that will conveniently route you to the right source for information, including:

    • Plan choice information and financial guidance from expert, unbiased financial planners at EY
    • Details about the FRS Pension Plan from counselors at the Division of Retirement
    • Information about conducting FRS Investment Plan transactions from Alight Solutions, the Investment Plan Administrator
    • Help using and understanding the new GuidedChoice ADVISOR® SERVICE

    Service hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time (7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time), Monday through Friday except holidays. (However, hours for the Division of Retirement are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern; 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Central.)

    Employees living or traveling outside the U.S. can still use the toll-free number to contact the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line. You'll need to have an AT&T calling card or AT&T international network remote access to use the service. Access AT&T's international dialing guide.
    Or, if you like, please e-mail us your question.

  • What Internet browsers should I use to access MyFRS.com?

    For the best site experience we recommend using any of the following browsers:

    • Google Chrome: 64 and above
    • Microsoft Edge
    • Firefox: 59.0 and above
    • Safari: 10.1.1 and above
    • iOS 10.3.2 and above
    • Android 7.0 and above

    Browsers which are older or are beta versions may not allow you to access MyFRS.com. Be sure to use the most recent version to ensure the best security, encryption, and privacy.


    If MyFRS.com or some of its features do not work correctly, please download the latest version of the browser or use a different browser.


    Please feel free to send feedback and any compatibility issues to supportmyfrs@tekstream.com

  • How do I translate text on the MyFRS.com website into a different language?

    To translate text, use the language translation tool located in the header of all publicly available pages.

  • Are there circumstances where I forfeit my retirement benefits if I commit a crime?

    Yes. If, prior to retirement, you commit a crime specified by Florida Statutes as requiring forfeiture of benefits and are found guilty, or enter a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, or your employment was terminated because of an admission to committing, aiding, or abetting a specified crime, retirement rights and benefits are forfeited (except for any portion of your Investment Plan account attributable to a refund of personal retirement contributions or deposits, if any were made to the plan when they were previously allowed). The forfeiture of benefits provision applies if a job-related felony offense as outlined below is committed:

    • Committing, aiding or abetting an embezzlement of public funds or any grand theft from the employer;
    • Committing bribery in connection with employment;
    • Committing any other felony specified in chapter 838, F.S., (bribery and misuse of public office), except ss. 838.15 and 838.16, F.S., (commercial bribes);
    • Committing any felony with intent to defraud the public or the employer of the right to receive the faithful performance of duty, or receiving or attempting to receive profit or advantage for the participant or another person through the use of his or her position; or
    • Committing an impeachable offense (applies to elected officials only).
    • Convicted of committing any felony as defined in s. 800.04, Florida Statutes, against a victim younger than 16, or any felony defined in Chapter 794, Florida Statutes, against a victim younger than 18.

    See s. 112.3173, F.S., and s. 8, Article II of the Florida Constitution for additional information. In addition to the crimes stated above, if a court of competent jurisdiction finds that you violated any state law against strikes by public employees, your benefits are forfeited.

    If your beneficiary is found to have intentionally killed you or procured your death, he or she forfeits all rights to retirement benefits. Any remaining benefits payable would be paid as if your beneficiary died before you.

  • What is "normal retirement" under the Investment Plan?

    Normal retirement for Investment Plan members is the later of either the date you attain normal retirement under the provisions of the Pension Plan or the date you are vested under the Investment Plan. The following chart spells out when you achieve normal retirement depending on your class of membership and first date of hire:

    Investment Plan Normal Retirement

    All Classes of Membership
    (except Special Risk)
    Special Risk
    Initially Hired after 7/1/11 Age 65 or older and 1 or more years of Investment Plan service Age 65 or older and 1 or more years of combined Pension Plan and Investment Plan service Any age and 33 or more years of service Age 60 or older and 1 or more years of Investment Plan service Age 60 or older and 1 or more years of combined Pension Plan and Investment Plan service
    Initially Hired prior to 7/1/11 Age 62 or older and 1 or more years of Investment Plan service Age 62 or older and 1 or more years of combined Pension Plan and Investment Plan service Any age and 30 or more years of service Age 55 or older and 1 or more years of Investment Plan service Age 55 or older and 1 or more years of combined Pension Plan and Investment Plan service

    If you have reached the normal retirement requirements of the Investment Plan for your class of membership, you may take a one-time distribution of up to 10% of your account balance after being terminated for one calendar month. You are eligible to receive the balance of your account after a total of three calendar months.

    In order to be eligible for the Health Insurance Subsidy (HIS), retired Investment Plan members must meet the "normal retirement" requirements of the Pension Plan, as follows:

    • If enrolled in the FRS after July 1, 2011, age 65 and eight years of service or 33 years of service or, if Special Risk age 60 and eight years of service or 30 years of Special Risk service.
    • If enrolled in the FRS prior to July 1, 2011, age 62 and six years of service or 30 years of service or, if Special Risk age 55 and six years of service or 25 years of Special Risk service.

    You own your benefit after you have achieved the one year vesting requirement, and are eligible to receive a benefit after terminating all FRS employment for three calendar months. At that time, you can:

    • Leave your money in the Investment Plan to grow;
    • Roll it over to an IRA or other qualified retirement program; or
    • Take a partial or total lump-sum distribution.
    • Purchase an annuity

    Re-employment restrictions apply to all participants receiving an FRS benefit.

    Call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line for information about the tax implications of your retirement and benefit payments. Click here for additional information.

  • How does early retirement affect my Investment Plan benefit?

    There isn't an early retirement reduction, like there is under the Pension Plan. You can start getting your benefit at any age after you are vested and have terminated all employment with any FRS-participating employer for three calendar months. (If you meet the normal retirement requirements of the Investment Plan1, you can take a one-time distribution of up to 10% of your account after one calendar month and the remainder after three months). However, the earlier you take your benefits, either as a lump-sum distribution or regular payments, the lower the benefit amount will be. That's because your balance hasn't had as much time to grow (and, in the case of regular payments, your benefit will be paid over a longer period). There may be tax implications depending on how and when you take benefit payments. See Taxability of Benefit for additional information on the tax consequences of benefit payments. Consult a tax specialist before making any decisions.

    1Normal retirement for Investment Plan members is the later of either the date the member attains normal retirement under the provisions of the Pension Plan or the date the member is vested under the Investment Plan. See "What is 'normal retirement' under the Investment Plan?" for a chart that provides a detailed explanation of normal retirement.

  • Is the Investment Plan the same as my employer’s deferred compensation program?

    No. The Investment Plan is completely separate and different from any deferred compensation plan in which you may be participating.

  • What Fees Do I Pay in the Investment Plan?

    As a member of the Investment Plan, you have the opportunity to choose from a variety of investment funds. Each of the available funds charges an investment management fee - the cost for managing your money. This is the only fee you pay. No hidden fees are paid to investment providers and no other administrative fees are charged to your account. (After your employment under the FRS ends, however, you will pay a quarterly plan-administration charge of $6.) The exact fee you pay depends on the funds you select. Fees are automatically deducted from the price of each fund before the prices are posted to your account. The daily price posted to your account is called a net asset valuation (NAV) price, meaning it is calculated after expenses. You will not see any separate billing or line item deduction for investment management fees on your quarterly statement. More information on fees is available in the Annual Fee Disclosure Statement available in the Investment Funds section on MyFRS.com.

    How the FRS Helps Lower the Fees You Pay
    As an FRS member, your investment fees are lower, in most cases, than they would be for a private investor. The FRS negotiates with each Investment Manager and Investment Provider to obtain the lowest management fees possible.

    Determine Your Fees
    Let's assume you have an account balance of $30,000 and you invest $20,000 in the FRS U.S. Stock Market Index Fund and $10,000 in the FRS U.S. Bond Enhanced Index Fund.

    To calculate the annual fee as a percentage, divide the annual fee (located online on MyFRS.com within the Investment Funds Section) by $1,000. (Note that the fund fees listed below are used for example purposes and are subject to change.)
    Then, multiply the dollar amount invested in each fund by the fund's percentage annual fee to determine your total annual investment management fee for that fund.

    Add up the fees for each fund.

    Name of Fund Amount Invested Annual Fee (%) Total Annual Fee ($)
    FRS U.S. Stock Market Index Fund $20,000 $0.20/$1,000 = 0.02% $20,000 x 0.02% = $4
    FRS U.S. Bond Enhanced Index Fund $10,000 $0.50/$1,000 = 0.05% $10,000 x 0.05% = $5
    Total $30,000 0.03%* $4 + $5 = $9

    * $9/$30,000 = 0.03% annual fee
    While you shouldn't shy away from a fund because of a higher fee, you should know the amount of your investment fees so you can make informed decisions. If you have questions about your fees or the funds in the Investment Plan, call the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 2.

  • If I choose the Investment Plan, will I get a regular statement so I can track how my investments are doing?

    Yes. You'll receive a quarterly statement of your Investment Plan account. You will also be able to monitor your account balance online at any time by logging into your Investment Plan account through the MyFRS.com website, then selecting "Investment". If you have any questions about your statement or how to access your account balance, you can call the toll-free MyFRS Financial Guidance Line 1-866-446-9377, Option 4 (TRS 711).

  • Who should my family contact in the event of my death?

    In the event of your death, your family should contact the MyFRS Financial Guidance Line at 1-866-446-9377, Option 2 (Investment Plan) or 1-866-446-9377, Option 3 (Pension Plan).

  • Are death benefits payable under the Investment Plan and Pension Plan?

    Yes, click here for a detailed comparison of the death benefits under both plans.

  • What is a de minimis distribution?

    If your vested account balance after termination is a de minimis amount as determined by the SBA, it will be subject to an automatic distribution. A de minimis amount has been set for accounts with vested balances of $1,000 or less. No distribution will be made, however, until you have been terminated from all employment with FRS-participating employers for at least six calendar months. A de minimis distribution will be either a complete lump-sum liquidation of your account, subject to the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code, or if you provide affirmative instructions, a lump-sum direct rollover distribution paid directly to the custodian of an eligible retirement plan on your behalf. If you receive a de minimis distribution, you will not be considered a reemployed retiree and will not be subject to the limitations applicable to such employees. If you receive a de minimis distribution and return to FRS-covered employment in the future, you will be placed back in the FRS Investment Plan and earn additional service credit. You are not eligible for the Health Insurance Subsidy if you receive a de minimis distribution.

  • Can I purchase leaves of absence or prior, past, out-of-state, in-state or military service under both plan options?

    No. Under the Investment Plan you cannot purchase additional service credit. You can only do this if you are enrolled in the Pension Plan. If you are electing the Investment Plan and choosing to transfer the present value of your FRS Pension Plan benefit into the Investment Plan, you must purchase additional service in the Pension Plan before the transfer. The only time you may purchase service under the Investment Plan is if the purchase is required by federal law, such as a military service leave-of-absence, which is covered under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act.

  • My employer offers a savings plan. Does participation in Investment Plan prevent me from participating
    in that savings plan?

    No. You can participate in any other additional savings vehicles your employer offers. In fact, it's to your advantage to participate in another savings plan (in addition to one of the two FRS plans). That way you can accumulate even more for retirement.

  • Can I use my annual leave payment that I receive when I separate employment, toward my retirement
    benefit calculation?

    Yes. You may use up to 500 hours of annual leave paid as a lump sum for retirement purposes. If you are in the Pension Plan, this additional salary may be used to increase your average final compensation and can be used when entering DROP when calculating your DROP benefit calculation. If you are in the Investment Plan, the additional employer retirement contributions paid for this lump sum payment will be deposited in your Investment Plan account. Lump-sum sick leave payments, retirement incentive payments, lump-sum annual leave payments in excess of 500 hours or bonuses are not considered wages for retirement purposes.

  • How soon can I get a distribution from my Investment Plan account?

    In order to qualify to receive a distribution of your benefits from your Investment Plan account, you cannot be employed with any FRS-participating employer in any capacity for three calendar months. (If you meet the normal retirement requirements for the Investment Plan under your class of membership, you can take a one-time distribution of up to 10% of your account after one calendar month and the remainder after three months.) Refer to the FRS Investment Plan Summary Plan Description for normal retirement requirements under the Investment Plan.

  • Are there restrictions on my reemployment after I retire from the Investment Plan?

    After you retire under the FRS, you can work for any private employer, for any public employer not participating in the FRS, or for any employer in another state, without affecting your FRS benefits.

    You cannot be reemployed in any type of position within 12 calendar months with an FRS-participating employer. Any type of position includes, but is not limited to, regularly established, full-time, part-time, OPS, temporary, seasonal, substitute teachers, adjunct professors, etc. Also, any paid or unpaid positions with an FRS employer, service arrangements with an FRS employer, employment by or through a third-party providing service to an FRS employer, or positions pre-arranged before retirement to provide services after retirement to any FRS employer, are prohibited. The only exception to the restrictions on reemployment limitations after retirement is if you are a retired law enforcement officer and are reemployed as a school resource officer by an FRS-participating employer during the seventh through twelfth calendar months after your retirement date, you are eligible to receive both your salary and distribution during this period.

    If you are reemployed in any type of position within (FRS-covered or non-covered) 12 calendar months of retirement (which does not include the month of your distribution) by an employer participating in the FRS, the following apply.

    You are considered retired once you terminate ALL FRS-covered employment and request a distribution (including a rollover) from your FRS Investment Plan account. A distribution may not be issued until you have been terminated for 3 calendar months (except that if you have met the normal retirement requirements of the Investment Plan you may receive a one-time distribution of up to 10% of your account balance after 1 calendar month). So, if you are reemployed with an FRS-participating employer prior to receiving a distribution of your benefits, you will not be considered to have terminated.

    Example: If you receive your distribution January 15, 2021, you cannot work in January 2021 (the month of your distribution) through July 31, 2021 without voiding your retirement. From August 1, 2021 through January 31, 2022, you can return to employment; however, you must suspend any Investment Plan distributions (if any) during this period. On or after February 1, 2022, there are no restriction on reemployment and you can receive further Investment Plan distributions even if you are reemployed by an FRS-participating employer.

    To determine exact dates of reemployment, review the comprehensive reemployment tables.

  • Do I have to pay federal income taxes on distributions from the Investment Plan?

    Yes. You will owe income taxes on your entire distribution in the year it’s paid to you, unless you roll it over into another qualified plan. See Taxability of Benefit for additional information on the tax consequences of benefit payments

  • Who is considered a rehired employee? A retired employee? A newly hired employee?
    • You are considered a rehired employee if:
      • you were formerly employed by an FRS-participating employer in a regularly established position that was covered for FRS purposes;
      • you terminated employment with an FRS-participating employer and did not take any distribution of benefits from the Investment Plan; and
      • you later returned to FRS-covered employment. Your Investment Plan account balance must have remained in the Investment Plan.

    If you return to FRS-covered employment, you will return to the Investment Plan, unless you decide to use your one-time second election option to change to the Pension Plan (see "Second Election" for further information).

    • You are considered a retired employee if:
      • If you terminate all employment with any FRS-participating agencies and take a distribution of any kind (lump sum, rollover, annuity, etc.). If you retired and returned to FRS-covered employment prior to July 1, 2010, you are considered a "reemployed retiree" who is a "renewed member" and subject to the laws and rules governing such employees. These laws and rules are enacted by the Florida Legislature and implemented by the appropriate agency and are subject to change.
      • If you were retired and reemployed between July 1, 2010 and June 30, 2017, you are not eligible for renewed membership in the FRS. You may have worked for an FRS-participating employer, but you were not eligible to earn additional retirement benefits under the FRS during this period.
      • Effective July 1, 2017, retirees of the Investment Plan, State University System Optional Retirement Program (SUSORP), Senior Management Service Optional Annuity Program (SMSOAP), and State Community College System Optional Retirement Program (SCCSORP) are eligible for renewed membership in the Investment Plan, SUSORP, or SCCSORP. You must be employed in an FRS-covered position on or after July 1, 2017 in order to be a renewed member. As a renewed member of the Investment Plan, you are eligible to enroll in the Regular Class, Special Risk Class, Special Risk Administrative Support Class Elected Officers’ Class or Senior Management Service Class, if the position meets the requirements to enroll in one of these classes.

    • You are considered a newly hired employee if:
      • You have never been employed by an FRS-participating employer in a regularly established position. As a new employee you will have until the end of the eighth month after your month of enrollment in the FRS to choose a retirement plan. If you do not choose a retirement plan during this period your default retirement plan will be as follows:

    Membership Class Plan Default
    Special Risk Class Pension Plan
    All classes (except Special Risk Class) Investment Plan

    Members that were hired prior to January 1, 2018, had until the end of the fifth month after their month of enrollment in the FRS to choose the Investment Plan, if you decide to do so.

    Please note that if you terminated employment prior to your choice period deadline without making an active election and return to work with a participating FRS employer in the future, you will be considered a new hire and provided a new choice period deadline to enroll in either the FRS Pension Plan or the FRS Investment Plan.