ARP for College/University

Eligibility for participation in an alternative retirement plan (ARP) includes:

Note: The college or university determines the definition of full-time employment

What Your Employees Will Receive

New employees who are eligible to choose one of the three OPERS retirement plans will receive the OPERS Retirement Plan Selection Kit, which contains detailed information about OPERS and the benefits of membership in our system.

ARP Enrollment Information

Regarding the enrollment forms, please be aware that as a university employer you may add your name, logo and employer code to the forms, but you may not alter the text in any way.

The Retirement Plan Election Form (ARP-3) is to be used for all new hires and newly eligible after August 1, 2005.

Enrollment Deadlines

The deadline for colleges/universities to receive an election form from any employee eligible to elect and ARP is 120 days from their employment start date or date they transferred to an eligible position.

Automatic Transfer of OPERS Contributions

For new hires and those newly eligible for ARP (due to status change from part-time to full-time) on or after August 1, 2005, all retirement contributions with that university/college are retroactive to the employee's ARP effective date and will automatically transfer to the selected ARP vendor.

For existing full-time employees eligible to elect an ARP as of August 1, 2005, contributions for the payroll period following the date of their ARP election, and going forward, will be sent to the selected ARP vendor.

Voluntary Transfer of Existing OPERS Contribution Balance

Employees, who have contributions on deposit prior to their ARP effective date, may transfer these contributions to their ARP account provided they are not currently contributing to OPERS in another position for which an ARP was not elected. These employees are not required to transfer their previous OPERS account and may leave it on deposit with the retirement system during and after participation in the ARP.

If your employee wishes to transfer their previous OPERS balance, they must complete the Member's Application for Transfer of Accumulated Contributions to an Alternative Retirement Plan (Form A-4 ARP). Here's what will be transferred, based on which OPERS retirement plan the employee has elected:

Re-employed retirees

Transfer of Voluntary Contribution Balance

Voluntary contributions and rollovers to the Member-Directed, Combined Plan, or the Additional Annuity (Traditional Pension Plan) will be sent to the ARP vendor along with the other transfer amounts in that plan.

Notification of New Hires

Employers are required to notify OPERS within 10 day's of an employee's eligibility to elect an ARP using the Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP) Eligibility Notice (Form ARP-2). This applies to both newly hired full-time employees and those employees whose status has changed from part-time to full-time. A digital version of Form ARP-2 is available digitally by logging into your ECS account.

Social Security Statement (form SSA-1945)

Social Security requires the Statement Concerning Your Employment in a Job Not Covered by Social Security (form SSA-1945) to be signed by all public employees. The employer must submit a copy of the signed form to the pension-paying agency.

Special note on employer contributions

The Ohio Retirement Study Council (ORSC) is conducting an actuarial review to determine whether a portion of the employer contributions will be remitted to OPERS. OPERS will inform employers once this has been determined.

Please remember:

Who to Contact for More Information

Contact Employer Outreach with questions or comments at 1-888-400-0965 or via the Internet at employeroutreach@opers.org. In addition, we urge you to encourage your employees to contact the OPERS Member Services Center at 1-800-222-7377 with any questions they might have. In-house and phone counseling appointments are also available to assist your employees with this very important decision.