FRS for Police Officers
As a police officer in the state of Florida, you put your life on the line every shift. While you enjoy your work, there’s nothing wrong with looking forward to the future. And when doing so, it’s safe to say that you have your eyes fixed on your retirement.
There is a big difference between saying you want to retire and actually being able to do so. Fortunately, in the state of Florida, the FRS for Police Officers typically comes into play for police officers (among many other high risk professions like firefighters).
How It Works
Here’s the most important thing to remember: the FRS Pension Plan is setup as a defined benefit plan, meaning that you are only promised to receive benefits if you meet particular criteria
The amount of money you receive depends on a variety of factors, including:
- Your earnings over the course of your career as a police officer
- Length of service
- Your membership class
- Cost of living increases
Note: the Florida Retirement System is responsible for making sure efficient funds are available to retiring police officers when the time comes.
Things You Need to Know
In order to receive your full retirement benefit under the FRS Pension Plan you are required to meet the service or age requirements.
With the FRS Pension Plan, normal retirement age is set at age 62 with a minimum of six years of service.
However, as a police officer, you’re categorized as a Special Risk member, meaning that your normal retirement age is set at age 55, as long as you have a minimum of six years of special risk service. Or, you can qualify if you:
- Have 25 years of special risk service, regardless of your age at retirement
- If you are at least age 52 with 25 years of special risk service
The above takes into consideration those who enrolled in the pension plan before July 1, 2011. For those who enrolled after, here is what you need to know:
- Normal retirement age for Special Risk members is set at age 60 with a minimum of eight years of special risk service
- Have 30 years of special risk service, regardless of your age at retirement
- If you are at least age 57 with 30 years of special risk service
After you reach normal retirement age, you are entitled to receive the full value of your pension, based on the factors detailed above.
However, you do have the right to receive your vested benefits before reaching full retirement age. If you make the decision to do so, your payout is subject to an early retirement reduction.
As a high risk employee, such as a police officer, you gain access to a special set of eligibility requirements under the FRS Pension Plan. It’s important to become familiar with the plan as a whole, the amount of money you can receive upon retirement, and when you’re able to start collecting.
FRS Pension For Police Officers
The FRS Pension is a very secure way of choosing your retirement. You will receive mail box money for the rest of your life, no matter how long you live. The amount of money you will receive will be base on your years of service.
In order to get a pension you need to reach 25 years of service or age 55. The formula that the FRS uses to calculate is:
(Years Of Service) * (3)*(Average Final Compensation)
For police officers with full 25 years of service, you should expect 75% of your income as a pension.
What Income Do They Use?
They will take the average highest 5 years of service. It means you will earn credit for all the extra hours and long shifts you work. That is why it makes sense to work more extra at the end of your career, as your pension will benefit forever.
FRS Investment Plan For Police Officers
In addition to having your FRS Pension as an option, police officers can elect to switch to the FRS Investment Plan. The investment plan is similar to a 401k. As you will have to contribute 3% and the state will add funds for you.
Your investment performance will be based on your underlining investments. If you are more of a risk taker, you can have higher potential of gain, but a higher risk as well. So pick wisely.
Switching One Time
You can only elect to switch one time between the pension and the investment plan. So make sure you are making the right choice of your particular situation. If you are not sure what to do, you need to speak to your financial advisor.
This is not a decision you should take lightly.
Here is an article we have: 7 Reasons Not To Switch To The Investment Plan.
Compare Pension vs Investment Plan
To compare the pension with the investment plan, you can give us a call and we will give you a free analysis.
To read about the FRS Pension you can visit : https://www.myfrs.com/FRSPro_Pension.htm