Taxes and Your NYSLRS Pension

Tax season is coming.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will begin accepting tax returns later this month. In late January, NYSLRS will mail tax information to retirees (and some members and beneficiaries) so they can file their taxes.


NYSLRS pensions are not subject to New York State income taxes, but they are subject to federal taxes. By January 31, we’ll mail 1099-R tax forms to nearly half a million retirees and beneficiaries. We also mail 1099-Rs to beneficiaries who received taxable income from NYSLRS in 2018, members who have taken taxable NYSLRS loans or have defaulted on their loans, and those who ended their membership and withdrew their contributions in 2018.

A 1099-R shows:

  • The total benefit paid to you in a calendar year.
  • The taxable amount of your benefit.
  • The amount of taxes withheld from your benefit.

If you don’t get your 1099-R by the second week of February, you can request a reprint. This year, reprints will be available for calendar years 2016, 2017 and 2018.

1099-R Interactive Tutorial

1099-r tax form tutorial screenshot

Understanding your 1099-R Tutorial

If you have questions about the information on the form, we feature an interactive 1099-R tutorial on our website. It walks you through a sample 1099-R and offers a short explanation of specific boxes on the form.

Changing Your Federal Tax Withholdings

Because federal tax law was revised for 2018, you may discover that you had too little or too much withheld. You can change your federal tax withholding at any time by sending us a W-4P form. (A handy tutorial about the W-4P  walks you through the steps on filling it out.)

W4-P Tax form tutorial screenshot

Understanding your W-4P Form Tutorial

We offer a federal tax withholding calculator. Enter a marital status and a number of exemptions into the calculator to see how much we would withhold based on current tax tables.

For more information, please visit the Taxes and Your Pension page on our website.

14 thoughts on “Taxes and Your NYSLRS Pension

    1. NYSLRS

      While a New York State service retirement benefit is federally taxable, it is not taxed by New York State, and we cannot withhold income tax from other states from your benefit. Please check with the North Carolina Department of Revenue ( to make arrangements for paying state income tax.

  1. Irvin D. Fritzhand

    I rarely receive my retiree Annual Financial Statement without having to make phone calls to NYSLRS, where I must wait on phone for 45 minutes to get through, if then. Does anyone know how I can get the amount to be deducted on my Federal tax regarding my Total Health insurance Premiums other than via the ever delayed Annual Statement?

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      We apologize for the trouble you have been having. Unfortunately, the NYSLRS Social Media team does not have access to your account information. Please email our customer service representatives using our secure contact form ( They can let you know how much your health insurance premium was for 2016. You should also let them know that you have trouble receiving your retiree statement every year, and be sure to provide them with your current address and a good daytime phone number in case they need to call you. Please allow 5 – 7 business days for a response.

      1. Dr. Irvin D. Fritzhand

        Thank you for your help, but upon sending my problem to the address you supplied it failed to get sent. I then tried another way to get my email through and and it may have worked but will wait a few days to receive a reply from NYSLRS, but am not optimistic in view of past failures. May need to send my tax return w/o the info as to my Total Health Insurance Premiums. My tax accountant will not be happy, but do not know what else to do. Perhaps the Controller’s Office will reply to my email to him. Again, thank you. Your office is the only one to have responded to me. Dr. Irvin D. Fritzhand

        1. NYSLRS Post author

          We apologize for the trouble. Here’s a tip that may help when filling out the secure email form (

          Be sure to fill out all of the form fields before clicking “Submit”. If there are any fields you aren’t sure of, you can enter placeholders instead. For example, if you don’t know your registration number, you can enter 12345678.

          If you want to try calling our Call Center again, we recommend calling first thing in the morning. Our representatives start taking calls at 7:30 am. The toll-free number is 1-866-805-0990.

  2. Darcy Williams

    My question is why is this the first out of 9yrs that I’ve received this form I’m still actively employed and this year was not my first taking a retirement loan not to mention the amounts on my form don’t make any sense to me

    1. NYSLRS

      To get the account-specific information you need, please email our customer service representatives using our secure email form. 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.

    1. NYSLRS

      Unfortunately, the NYSLRS social media team doesn’t have access to your retirement account information.

      If you are asking about your 1099-R tax form, please email our customer service representatives using our secure email form. 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.

      Otherwise, you can view a breakdown of your current monthly benefit payment anytime by signing into your Retirement Online account.

  3. Rebecca j Spencer

    Box 12 has EXEMPT but we can’t put letters in the form to file. Then when I put zero in box 12, I’m being charged taxes on my state return

    1. NYSLRS

      Your NYSLRS pension is exempt from New York State and local income taxes. For assistance in filing your taxes, please call the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance at 518-457-5181.

  4. Marisa LaTorre

    why haven’t I received my 1099-R yet? If they were mailed out by January 31st, I should have received it by now. Why can’t these be made available to view and print from the website? Using paper forms that must be printed and mailed via snail mail is an outdated system.
    Out of 9 statements that I need in order to file my taxes this year, this is the only form I have yet to receive and it is February 18th!

    1. NYSLRS

      We’re sorry you did not receive your 1099-R.

      You can request a reprint of your 1099-R online. The reprint will be sent to the mailing address the Retirement System has on file for you.

      If you moved recently, you will need to update your address before ordering a reprint. Retirement Online is the fastest way to check and update your address with NYSLRS. Unless your new address is a PO box or International address, you can also email your address change using our secure contact form ( Complete all form fields and provide your old and new address. You can also use the secure email form to request that a reprint of your 1099-R be mailed to you.


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