Age Milestones for Retirement Planning

Age Milestones for Retirement PlanningWhether you’re 22 or 52, you should be planning for retirement.

NYSLRS retirement benefits are based on tier status, years of service, and average salary. Age is also an important number, and not just the age when you plan to retire. Here are some age milestones to keep in mind while planning for your retirement.

Under 50: It’s never too early to start saving for retirement. Even modest savings can add up over time as investment returns grow and interest compounds.

50: The Age 50 and Over Catch-Up provision allows you to save more pre-tax dollars in a retirement account starting in the calendar year in which you turn 50.

55: The earliest age most NYSLRS members can retire. (Does not apply to members in special retirement plans.) Your pension may be permanently reduced if you retire at 55.

59½: The age you can draw down money from a tax-deferred retirement savings plan, such as an IRA, without facing a potential federal tax penalty. (The penalty does not apply to New York State Deferred Compensation savings if you are retired or have left public service.)

62: Full service retirement age for Tiers 2, 3, 4 and 5 and PFRS Tier 6. Earliest age you can begin collecting a Social Security pension, but the benefit would be reduced. For more information, read When to Start Receiving Retirement Benefits.

63: Full retirement age for ERS Tier 6 members.

65: Age most people are eligible for Medicare benefits.

66: Full Social Security retirement age if you were born from 1943 through 1954. Add two months for each year from 1955 through 1959.

67: Full Social Security age if you were born in 1960 or later.

70: If you do not take your Social Security benefit at full retirement age, your benefit will increase each year until you reach age 70. Delaying Social Security after 70 will not increase your benefit.

70½: If you have tax-deferred retirement savings and are no longer working, you must begin withdrawing some of this money after you turn 70½.

One Last Number: Having a rough idea of your life expectancy is essential to retirement planning.

For more information about retirement planning, read our publication Straight Talk About Financial Planning For Your Retirement.

16 thoughts on “Age Milestones for Retirement Planning

  1. William S

    Does military service credit count towards the 30 year milestone. Example if I have 29 years of retirement credit in Tier 4 working for my civilian employer and 2 years of military credit and retire at age 55 would I receive 61.5% of FAS or would there be a penalty?

    1. NYSLRS

      Military service credit can be used to reach retirement milestones such as vesting and qualifying for a better retirement benefit calculation.

      1. william

        If someone retires with 30.4 years of service credit in tier 4 does it stay at 30.4 years for the pension or does it get rounded down to 30 years or if it was 30.6 years rounded up?

        1. William

          If someone retires with 30.4 years of service credit in tier 4 is the pension calculated using 30.4 years or is it rounded down to 30.0 years?

    1. NYSLRS

      If your benefit is paid by direct deposit, you will have access to it on the last business day of each month. If your benefit is paid by check, we will mail it on the second-to-last business day of each month.

      For specific pension payment dates, check out our Pension Payment Calendar page.

  2. Donna Patterson

    I would still use this form if I was a member of the NYSLRS at the time of this employment and not looking to purchase it back only looking to get credit for it? Also when does the time I am purchasing for military service show up on my Total Service, is it after all of the arrears are paid?

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      If you’re looking to receive credit for time when you were a member of NYSLRS, the way you apply may depend on the status of that membership. The NYSLRS social media team cannot access your account information. We recommend emailing our customer service representatives using our secure email form. One of our representatives will review your account and answer your questions about getting credit for a previous membership as well as your questions about purchasing military service credit. Filling out the secure form allows us to safely contact you about your personal account information.

  3. Donna Patterson

    I was reviewing my employment summary and noticed that one of my public employments is not listed. What form do I need to fill out in order for this to be researched and added to my employment summary?

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      To request credit for previous public employment, please complete and submit a Request to Purchase Service Credit (RS5042). Or, send a letter that includes specific details about the period of employment for which you are seeking credit.

      Mail either of these to:
      110 State Street
      Albany, NY 12244-0001

      For detailed information on receiving credit for all of your public service, please check your plan booklet on our Publications page. You can also read our publication, Service Credit for Tiers 2 through 6 (VO1854).

  4. Tara Osborne

    While you don’t get hit with the federal penalty at age 55, do you have to pay NYS income taxes if you make a withdrawal from Deferred Comp?

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      If you need the total amount you received for calendar year 2017 in order to prepare your tax return, that information will be on your 1099-R tax form, which we mail out by January 31 each year.

      Your Retiree Annual Statement, which will be mailed near the end of February, will also provide you with your calendar year 2017 totals.

      In the meantime, you can sign in to your Retirement Online account to view a breakdown of your current monthly payment.


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