KPERS working after retirement simplifiedScott Rothschild
The Kansas Legislature has simplified KPERS working after retirement provisions and eliminated the earnings cap, making it easier for Kansas school leaders to hire qualified retirees for critical positions.
Under an agreement reached in mid-May, as of January 1, 2018, the following provisions apply to any KPERS school retiree, regardless of retirement date:
- There is no earnings cap;
- For non-covered employees (those who work 630 hours or less in a calendar year) employers do not make a contribution to the KPERS fund;
- Employers will make the statutory contribution on a covered employee’s first $25,000 in earnings in a calendar year and make a 30 percent contribution on earnings above $25,000;
- An employee who retires before the age of 62 must wait 180 days before returning to work;
- Employees aged 62 and older must wait 60 days before returning to work;
- Pre arrangements are prohibited in all cases.
“This is a major attempt by the Legislature to solve all of the challenges around working after retirement,” said KPERS Director Alan Conroy. “It appears this will set the course that everyone will better understand working after retirement.”
School leaders asked the Legislature to simplify working after retirement rules due to critical shortages of teachers, superintendents and other administrators, particularly in rural Kansas, where younger employees can be scarce.
“This agreement will make it easier for districts to hire people and for retirees to decide to go back into the job market,” said United School Administrators Executive Director G.A. Buie. “It gives us the flexibility of getting the best person possible into the classroom.”