REMINDER: Upcoming VRS changes, Sept. 1 VLDP deadline

August 1, 2013

VRS

By Erik Johnston

Most employees hired for the first time in a Virginia Retirement System (VRS)-covered position will be enrolled in the new mandatory Hybrid Retirement Plan effective Jan. 1, 2014. In addition, localities must decide whether to participate in the Virginia Local Disability Plan (VLDP), a disability program for employees covered under the Hybrid Retirement Plan, or opt-out and provide comparable coverage. Localities have until Sept. 1 to exercise that opt-out option or request an extension until Nov. 1.

VACoRP has worked with Standard Insurance and many local governments to develop an opt-out program that will compete with the VRS Program, but will offer more affordable benefits (lower premiums) and stability (fixed premium rates for 3 years) that cannot be achieved through the VRS Program.

Localities are encouraged to look at the program that is currently being rolled out and exercise your “opt out” with VRS. For more information about the Standard Insurance Opt-Out program, click here.

Employees covered under the Hybrid Retirement Plan will automatically participate in VLDP unless a locality opts out and agrees to provide a comparable program by submitting a resolution to VRS. Hybrid Retirement Plan participants are not eligible for traditional disability retirement. Localities cannot opt out of the Hybrid Retirement Plan.

Members of the State Police Officers’ Retirement System (SPORS), Virginia Law Officers’ Retirement System (VaLORS) and local hazardous duty employees covered under enhanced benefits are not eligible to participate in the Hybrid Retirement Plan. Current Plan 1 and Plan 2 members can elect to participate in the Hybrid Retirement Plan during a one-time election period beginning Jan. 1 and ending April 30, 2014.

Visit the VRS website for information on the Hybrid Retirement Plan and VLDP, including plan provisions, rates, eligibility, requesting a resolution extension and more.

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