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J&S requirements for governmental plans.


Guest Jose Rosario
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Guest Jose Rosario

According to the Governmental Plans Answer Book (Q 2:65), thought not subject to 401(a)(11)/417 (federal) J&S requirements, state retirement systems (as opposed to other governmental plans, e.g. a farmers co-op) may be subject to state J&S requirements; i.e., governmental plans OTHER THAN state retirement systems are NEVER subject to ANY J&S requirements, with the exception of three states that require automatic survivor benefits for ALL governmental plans in those states.

1. Does anyone tend to agree or disagree with the above statement concerning Q 2:65?

2. Does anyone know what the three states are?

3. I have written to the AARP to acquire a copy of the survey cited by the Governmental Plans Answer Book , "AARP, Falling Short, A 50-State Survey of Spousal Rights under State Pension Plans"; does anyone have this survey? I was unable to acquire it over the telephone from AARP, as I was unable to cite the publication it was originally published in.

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Guest Jose Rosario

Thanks, Mbozek.

I'll post my findings as soon as I have them.

By the way, for clarification, the word "thought" in the first line should be "though", as in "though not subject to 401(a)(11)/417 (federal) J&S requirements, ..."

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Guest tlandin

Just wanted to correct the statement concerning the New York State Systems - we do not have required J&S options - no signoff is required for any retiring member

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Guest Jose Rosario

Thanks, TLandin.

I rec'd confirmation, by the way, that the three

states that require automatic survivor benefits are Delaware, Illinois, and South Dakota, but I am not sure if the automatic survivor requirement is applicable to state retirement systems or ALL governmental plans within the states.

My guess is that states would impose J&S on their "own" plans, i.e. the state's retirement system, but not on ALL governmental plans that may be sponsored within their borders or across several states.

I'll continue to look at the issue and post my findings as soon as I have them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My understanding is that there is a J & S required benefit for those NYS state educational employees who participate in the Optional retirement programs offerred by SUNY and CUNY. These programs are provided through outside vendors. There is no J & S requirement for salary reduction of the employees own contributions in a discretionary TDA plan.

mjb

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Note, too, that some states don't allow governmental systems other than their own. For example, Wisconsin law only allows the County of Milwaukee and City of Milwaukee to have their own system. All other governmental employees (from municipalities to the state itself) must be in the state retirement plan. So, although the state might not require J&S, if these plans have it, then it is the same as requiring it through law.

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Guest Jose Rosario

So far, it appears that WI, CA, MN, WA, NE, KY and MI do not require J & S for governmental plans. I'll post if I am able to acquire a comprehensive list.

Please note that the discussion should bear in mind that there probably is a distinction in at least some states between state regulations applicable to state retirement systems vs. state regulations applicable to governmental plans sponsored by non-state governmental, or "quasi-governmental", entities. Such a distinction may account for the differing opinions relfected on prior posts?

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