State of Oregon retirement eligibility is determined by working in a qualified position for at least six full months at half time or greater, where SOU covers the employer and employee contributions. However, all employees do have the opportunity to contribute into retirement savings plans through regular monthly payroll deductions into either a Tax Deferred Investment 403(b) and Oregon Savings Growth 457 Plan.

For webinars, local meetings and information about scheduling with a retirement representative, please go to the Retirement Education webpage.

Preparing for retirement? Check out our Retirement Planning webpage. (Coming soon)

State Retirement for Classified Employees

  • Employees in a Classified position that have met eligibility are automatically placed into OPSRP (Oregon Public Service Retirement Plan), the newest tier of PERS (Public Employers Retirement Service). The OPSRP tier is a defined benefit pension plus an individual account. Pension vesting requires 5 years of at least 600 hours of employment, with Pension benefits determined by years of service and date of hire.  The individual account or IAP (Individual Account Program) is vested immediately and available for lump sum distribution or dispersed payment options. Pension benefits are generally available when you reach a normal retirement age of 65. Contributions and benefits are based upon only salary subject to Oregon taxes. Employees not living or working in the State of Oregon (not paying Oregon taxes) may not be eligible. 

State Retirement for Unclassified Employees

Employees working in an Unclassified position are allowed a choice between one of the following retirement plans:
  • OPSRP (Oregon Public Service Retirement Plan) is the newest tier of PERS (Public Employers Retirement Service). The OPSRP tier is a defined benefit pension plus an individual account. Pension vesting requires 5 years of at least 600 hours of employment, with Pension benefits determined by years of service and date of hire.  The individual account or IAP (Individual Account Program) is vested immediately and available for lump sum distribution or dispersed payment options. Pension benefits are generally available when you reach a normal retirement age of 65. Contributions and benefits are based upon only salary subject to Oregon taxes. Employees not living or working in the State of Oregon (not paying Oregon taxes) may not be eligible.
  • ORP (Optional Retirement Plan) is a defined contribution alternative to PERS for unclassified employees whose career mobility may take them outside Oregon and to other employers. The ORP is maintained by OPURP (Oregon Public Universities Retirement Programs). ORP participants select mutual funds and annuities through TIAA-CREF or Fidelity. A vested participant’s account is portable to another employer’s plan or may remain invested in the ORP if she/he leaves the State of Oregon employment. Partial vesting occurs immediately upon enrollment with full vesting after contributions in 5 years or age 50. New members are placed in Tier Four, where SOU will match up to 4% into a TDI 403(b) plan.

Retirement Accounts Available for All Employees

All employed by SOU have the opportunity to voluntarily contribute their own money into retirement savings plans through regular monthly payroll deductions into the following plans:
  • OSGP (Oregon Savings Growth 457 Program) is available through PERS (even if you are not a PERS member) and investments are managed by the Oregon Investment Council. Employees can save on a pre-tax basis or after-tax through the Roth 457. Enrollment forms are to be sent directly to OSGP either by fax at (503)603-7655 or by mailing to OSRP, 800 Summer Street N.E., Suite 200, Salem, OR 97301. 
  • Tax-Deferred Investment 403(b) (TDI403(b)) is available through OPURP and offers tax advantages either as pre-tax investment or as post-tax Roth accounts, which allow qualified investment earnings to be withdrawn tax-free after retirement. TDI participants may choose mutual fund and annuity investment programs through either TIAA-CREF or Fidelity Investments. To enroll, complete the Salary Reduction Agreement and return to the Benefit Office for processing. To stop contributions, a Salary Reduction Agreement must be submitted with zero dollar amounts elected. 

Retirement Resources

For webinars, local meetings and information about scheduling with a retirement representative, please go to the Retirement Education webpage.

If looking to retire, our Retiree Checklist can assist. It has items to complete 24 months prior to retirement, 12 months prior to retirement, and 3 months prior to retirement. 

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