What Happens After You File
Your Retirement Application

The big day has finally come. You’ve submitted your retirement application, and you’re ready to start collecting your pension. Here’s what will happen next.

There are four documents we’ll need in addition to your retirement application. You can send them with your retirement application or after you apply:

retirement application

After we receive your application, we will send you a confirmation letter, which lists your retirement date and the forms we’ve received from you. If you don’t submit a W-4P, we’ll withhold federal taxes based on the status “married with three dependents.” (You can change your withholding at any time.)

If you haven’t received an estimate in the past 18 months, you don’t need to send an option election form with your retirement application. We’ll send you an estimate, along with an option election form, after we receive your retirement application.

Your First Payment

Your monthly payments will be based on the salary and service information we have on file.

We cannot send your first payment until we have proof of your date of birth. If you can, you should submit this document with your retirement application. (A copy of your New York driver’s license, birth certificate, passport or naturalization papers are acceptable proofs.) If you don’t have proof of date of birth available when you submit your retirement application, you can email us a photocopy by attaching it to our secure contact form.

We encourage you to sign up for direct deposit, so you’ll have safe and reliable access to your pension payments on the last business day of each month. Paper checks are mailed on the second to last business day of each month and may take longer to receive.

Possible Adjustments

If we receive additional payroll information from your employer, such as eligible lump sum payments, a retroactive pay increase or lagged regular earnings, we may need to adjust your pension payment. Because of the many variables that are often involved in verifying service and salary details with your former employer, finalizing your retirement benefit amount can take some time. The time this takes depends on the complexity of the circumstances. For example, if you worked for multiple public employers, it may take longer to pull together all your income information.

Once we have all the information we need, we’ll recalculate your pension amount. If your payment increases, you will receive a retroactive payment for the amount you are owed back to your date of retirement (the difference between your initial payments and your final retirement benefit amount).

For more information, please read our publication How Do I Prepare to Retire? and these recent blog posts:

8 thoughts on “What Happens After You File
Your Retirement Application

  1. Mark

    how long does it take to finalize pensions where there ‘were such as eligible lump sum payments, a retroactive pay increase or lagged regular earnings,’

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      The three circumstances you mention tend to take more time for our retirement application case workers to research and resolve. So, if a retirement includes any one of them, it could take anywhere from 6-18 months to finalize the pension amount. Keep in mind, however, that almost all retirees will receive their first pension payment within 30-45 days of their retirement date. The initial payment will be close to the full amount of the final benefit.

  2. Robert J. Zysk

    I am a tier 4 RN that is going to retire in a few years my question is we max out with 1600 hours of sick time and I understand we can use 1200 hours of that to pay for our insurance, what happen with the other 400 hours? Can it be used to help defray the increase in insurance in future years?

    1. NYSLRS Post author

      NYSLRS does not administer health insurance programs for its retirees.

      For New York State retirees and some municipal retirees, the New York State Department of Civil Service administers the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP). They publish a booklet titled “Planning for Retirement,” which includes information about sick leave credit. You can find a copy online at http://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/publications/retirement/2018/planning-for-retirement-2018.pdf.

      If you have further questions, the link to the Civil Service contact page is http://www.cs.ny.gov/home/contact.cfm.

  3. Lori brown

    So still doesn’t tell me approximately (under normal situations) when the first check will b deposited. 1 mo or 2 months after last day of retirement?

    1. Lyle Hartog

      I am in month 3 and still waiting. They don’t respond to emails and when you visit no one can tell you. No one answers the phone either. If this were a private company they would be out if business. So captive to the system


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