Your retirement benefits depend on a few, simple factors:

  1. Age
  2. Length of Creditable Service
  3. Salary Level (Highest Consecutive Three Year Average)
  4. Group Classification

Age: Use your age as of your last birthday to determine your benefit rate. For instance, if you are currently 55 your benefit rate is .015.

Please note, the Option C factor used for calculation is based on nearest birthday of the retiree and the beneficiary. For example: for a retiring member who is 58 years and 8 months old, and beneficiary who is 57 years and 2 months old, the factor used would be age 59 for the retiring member and age 57 for the beneficiary.

Length Of Creditable Service: You are considered eligible for retirement if you have twenty years of creditable service or you are age 55 with at least 10 years of service. Creditable service is earned by all memebers state workers employed on at least half-time basis and who contribute to the retirement system.

  • Part-Time Public ServiceIf you are employed on less than a full-time basis, you will earn an amount of service equal to a percentage of the full-time service rate. A worker employed on a half-time basis will receive 50% or 6 months service for each year completed.
    • You may also be eligible to receive credit if you served on, at least, a half-time basis with a city or county in Massachusetts or if you taught in the Commonwealth’s public school system.
  • Military Service You may also receive credit for military service if you were honorably discharged under the following circumstances:
    • you were called to serve in a war;
    • you served in the armed forces under the Selective Service Act of 1948;
    • you are re-employed in the public sector within two years of your discharge
    • Under these circumstances, your period of actual military service is counted as creditable service, to a maximum of four years. Or, once you are an active member in service, you may purchase up to 4 years of military service to be used towards your public retirement. National Guard time may be purchased, as well, with 5 years of Guard service equaling one year of public service.

Salary Level: To figure out your average annual rate of compensation, add your three highest consecutive years compensation and divide by three.

Group Classification: Your group classification will determine the specifics of your benefit rate. Group classification is determined by state law, under M.G.L. Chapter 32 and not the employer or your agency. All questions regarding group classification should be directed to the retirement board office.

  • Group One Members Officials and general employees including clerical, administrative and technical workers, laborers, mechanics and all others not otherwise classified. If you think you qualify for group one classification, you are ready to determine your approximate annual allowance.
  • Group Two Members Employees with hazardous occupations such as mental health hospital attendants, some correction employees and certain court employees.If you think you qualify for group two classification, add five years to your determined age and then re-consult the Benefit Rate Percentage Chart. (note: you must be at least 55 to retire in this group.)
  • Group Three Members State Police Officers.If you think you qualify for group three classification, please see a retirement counselor to determine your benefits.
  • Group Four Members Police officers and fire fighters.If you think you qualify for group four classification, please see a retirement counselor to determine your benefits.