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Calpers Pension Reduces Social Security Pay?

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I've recently retired and am getting a pension through CalPERS. Although Social Security is several years away for me, my wife mentioned something that gave me pause. After looking at the Social Security website, she said that if you were receiving a pension, your SS payout would be decreased. I haven't been able to find that information on my own. The closest I see is the provision that if you received a pension from a job in which you did not have to pay SS, your SS payments would be reduced( Windfall Profit Elimination). Every job I've had, though, I have paid into SS. Does anyone know whether I'll see a reduction in SS given my circumstances?

 

Thanks!

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Cfit,

The one sure way to find out is go to your nearest social security administration office, grab a number, wait for an hour and talk to them or make an appointment.

They will have your entire working record and tell you your status.

Good luck, Steve

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Guest Joel L Frank

Your SS is NOT based on your California public employment. It is based on other employment. Because you are receiving a pension based on your public employment in California your SS check may be less than it otherwise would be. Please see "Windfall Elimination Provision" on the SS website.

 

Joel

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My wife checked again and found that she was mistaken. Whew!

 

 

The WEP docs on the Social Security site says:

If you work for an employer who does not withhold Social Security taxes from your salary, such as a government agency or an employer in another country, any pension you get based on that work may reduce your Social Security benefits.
Since my paychecks always had SS deductions, I'm ok.

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Guest Joel L Frank

 

My wife checked again and found that she was mistaken. Whew!

 

 

The WEP docs on the Social Security site says:

If you work for an employer who does not withhold Social Security taxes from your salary, such as a government agency or an employer in another country, any pension you get based on that work may reduce your Social Security benefits.
Since my paychecks always had SS deductions, I'm ok.

 

 

California public-sector workers do not pay into SS. You are receiving a CalPERS pension. Your paychecks while employed in a non-governmental position in (or out) of the State of Californian show a SS deduction. When you start to receive SS you may be subject to the Windfall Elimination Provision because you are receiving a pension based on that non-SS covered employment.

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Joel,

 

I always thought this too, but I found this: http://hr.fullerton.edu/benefits/Retirement/CalPERS.asp

 

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) http://www.calpers.com/ is the State of California retirement system in which CSU, Fullerton participates. Coordinated with Federal Social Security, employee are automatically enrolled if appointed:

  • full-time for a period that exceeds six months
  • half-time averaging 20 hours per week for one year or longer
  • half-time (7.5 units) or more for 3 consecutive semesters

Cal PERS is a defined benefit plan and is coordinated with Social Security. CSU, Fullerton employees who are members of the CalPERS system are in the "State Miscellaneous, First Tier" plan. Employees who retire from PERS are eligible for benefits from the retirement system as well as Social Security benefits. CalPERS provides each active member with a tax-free $5,000 group term life insurance policy.

As a member of CalPERS, employees also participate in Social Security (with the exception of unit 8 employees who contribute $2.00 under the 1959 Survivor benefit).

  • Social Security and Medicare taxes are withheld from your paycheck.
  • Withholding rates are 6.20 percent for Social Security and 1.45 percent for Medicare.
  • Social Security maximum limits change each year with changes in the national average wage index. You can view the Contribution and Benefits Base at the following link,http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/COLA/cbb.html.
  • There is no limit for Medicare.

--

Dan Otter

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CFIT,

 

Were you a classified employee? I found this: Social Security for California's classified employees

 

Will my Social Security benefit be reduced because I will receive a CalPERS pension?

Many classified employees are asking this question as they begin to apply for California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) and Social Security benefits. The answer is simply “if you have always contributed to both Social Security and CalPERS on all earnings on which your CalPERS (or any other pension) is based, your Social Security should not be reduced.


In some cases, however, Social Security has mistakenly applied a reduction to classified employees who were entitled to full benefits. The two most common reductions classified employees are subjected to are: the Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset.

 

--

Dan Otter

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Guest Joel L Frank

Some CalPERS members are covered under SS and some are not. Quite confusing. It depends on whether or not the public employer decided to be covered.

 

That said, public school personnel in California are not covered under SS.

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Joel,

 

Perhaps you are confusing CALSTRS and CALPERS. Classified employees (CALPERS) at LAUSD have mandatory SS (6.20%) and Medicare (1.45%) deductions and receive full SS and Medicare benefits as long as they work 40 quarters........ Bob

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Guest Joel L Frank

Hi Bob,

 

So some CalPERS members are covered under SS and some are not. The k-12 crowd are members of CalSTRS and these folks are not covered under SS. Is this a correct understanding? Thanks Bob.

 

Joel

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Guest Joel L Frank

Hi Bob,

 

I think I have a more complete understanding of the issue.

 

A few CalPERS members come from the public school arena but they are considered "classified employees" because they are not teachers/pedagogues. They support the teaching process via: business administration, transportation, maintenance, food service, etc. There are about 210,000 employees of this nature employed by California public school districts. These "classified employees" are covered by SS. Great for them!!!!

 

By law teachers/pedagogues are not "classified employees" and thus cannot join CalPERS. They are mandated into CalSTRS and are not covered by SS. Too bad for them!!!

 

Best,

Joel

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