Filing Your Application for Retirement

You’ve carefully planned your retirement, received your benefits estimate and are ready to take the big step. But before you can start receiving a pension, you’ll need to complete and submit your Application for Service Retirement (RS6037). You can also get a copy of the form from your employer or by contacting our Call Center.

Timing is important. We must have your application on file at least 15 days, but not more than 90 days, before your retirement date. (The 15-day rule does not apply if you are over 70 or left the public payroll before age 55.)

Be sure to list all of you public employment on the form. If you’ve ever been a member of another public retirement system in New York State, you’ll need to note that as well. Because your application is a legal document, you must sign it in the presence of a notary public. Many members make an appointment at a Consultation Site to file their applications. Our information representatives can notarize your application, help you with your paperwork and answer any questions.

Filing for Retirement

If you don’t wish to file in person, you can send your application by mail. Mailing the application “Certified Mail — Return Receipt Requested” will help you track this important document. Certified mail is also a good idea if you are close to a filing deadline because we consider the day it was mailed as the filing date. The mailing address is:

110 State Street
Albany, NY 12244-0001

At the same time you submit your application you can also file a W-4P, so federal taxes can be withheld from your payments, and a Direct Deposit Enrollment Application, so your pension can be deposited directly into your bank account. If you’ve had a recent pension estimate, you can submit a payment option election form along with your retirement application. You should also submit a photocopy of proof of your date of birth

For more information, read our booklet “Life Changes: How to Prepare to Retire” or contact us.

12 thoughts on “Filing Your Application for Retirement

  1. Marcia

    How long does it take to receive a letter back after sending in my retirement papers? Is my local HR contacted at the same time that I receive my letter? Does NYSLRS call my HR or email or written letter? I would like to tell my co-workers prior to HR even though my supervisor knows.

    1. NYSLRS

      To check on the status of your retirement application and acknowledgement letter, please email our customer service representatives using the secure email form on our website (see link below). One of them will review your account and respond to your questions. Filling out the secure form allows us to safely contact you about your personal account information.

  2. Debora Wright

    I have been trying for 6 weeks to get an appointment to finalize my retirement for November. I have been trying to make an appt. since July 2019 for October due to me wanting to retire in Nov. You no longer can wait on the line, you are automatically told to call back and get hung up on to try again. I called the Utica office at 1259 and while waiting it went to 1pm. The recording said that they were too many calls. How could that be as they open 1 to 4 after lunch. I have tried to make appts. at Utica,Syracuse &,Watertown. with no luck, I need an appointment soon.

    1. NYSLRS

      We apologize for the difficulty you’re having reaching us. Your message is important to us and we have sent you a private message in response.

  3. Frank

    I sent my retirement paper work in May 14th 2019 certified mail. The post office delivered it somewhere else. I have the receipt when I sent it but it only shows the zip code where it was suppose to go in Albany. When can I retire?

    1. NYSLRS

      Your retirement application must be on file with the Office of the State Comptroller at least 15 days before your chosen retirement date.

      Please email a description of your situation to our customer service representatives using our secure email form (see link below), and one of our representatives will review your account and respond to your questions. Filling out the secure form allows us to safely contact you about your personal account information.

  4. Paul Sebastian

    Can I personally bring my retirement application to the Albany office to drop it off? If so, do I need an appointment?

    1. NYSLRS

      Certainly you may. You don’t need an appointment to drop off forms or have them notarized at the Albany office.

      However, if you have questions for one of our information representatives, you will need an appointment. To make an appointment, call us toll-free at 1-866-805-0990 (518-474-7736 in the Albany, New York area). You can also email us from our website at Please contact our Call Center at least two weeks before your visit.

    1. NYSLRS

      If you’re talking about Retirement Online, you may need to register again.

      We’ve launched a new version of Retirement Online, and if you created your user ID and password before January 4, 2017, you will need to re-register.

      We offer two step-by-step guides to help with the Retirement Online registration (PDF) and sign-in (PDF) processes.

      You can also can get answers to Retirement Online questions by calling 1-866-805-0990 (518-474-7736 in the Albany, New York area). Press 1, then:

      1. For password reset;
      2. For assistance in registering for Retirement Online; or
      3. For any other Retirement Online questions.
  5. Jodi S. Schmitt

    I have a question about the savings account that is on page two of the member annual statement.
    When do I receive this money, or is it added to my pension?

    1. NYSLRS

      Your NYSLRS pension is a defined-benefit plan. Your pension will be based on your earnings and years of service rather than how much you pay in (as it would be in a 401(k), for example).

      Assuming you’re a Tier 3, 4, 5 or 6 member, the contributions listed on your statement are mandatory contributions and will help fund your pension. They aren’t considered savings, and they are not refunded to when you retire. Instead, you will receive a lifetime pension benefit.

      For more information, please refer to your plan book on our Publications page.


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