The LASERS pension program is funded through a combination of employee contributions, employer contributions and earnings from investments

The LASERS pension program is funded through a combination of employee contributions, employer contributions and earnings from investments

What Types of Louisiana State Pensions are offered?

Within the state of Louisiana three major state-funded pensions exist for state employees to generate a retirement plan. The state-funded programs include:

Louisiana State Employees’ Retirement System (LASERS) – all state employees not covered under a specifically designated plan

Louisiana State Police Retirement System (LSPRS) – This is a defined benefit program strictly for state police officers

Teachers’ Retirement System of Louisiana (TRSL) – For public teachers working in the state

Description of the LASERS pension program

The LASERS pension program is funded through a combination of employee contributions, employer contributions and earnings from investments. Employee contributions are determined by the employee’s start date:

  • Before June 30, 2006 the contribution rate is 7.5%
  • After June 30th, 2006 the contribution increases to 8%
  • Employer contribution rates are set by the Public Retirement System’s Actuarial Committee or PRSAC.

Unless the employee falls under a special position category, retirement may be taken:

Hired on or before June 30, 2006 may retire:

  • Age 60 with 10 years vesting time achieved
  • Age 55 after 25 years of service
  • Any age once 30 years of service credit have been reached
  • Reduced benefits available after 20 years of service credit has been established at any age

Hired after July I, 2006 may retire:

  • After 5 years of service credit are established at age 60
  • Reduced benefits may be taken at any age once 20 years of service have been reached

Special employee positions have separate membership specifics as follows:

Bridge Police – 8.5% employee contributions

If hired before June 30, 2006 vesting period is 10 years and employees are eligible for retirement benefits:

  • 10 years of service and age 60
  • Any age once 25 years of service credit has been established
  • Reduced benefit retirement at any age once 20 years of service has been established

If hired after July1, 2006 the vesting period is also 10 years and employees may take retirement benefits in the following categories:

  • On or after age 60 with 10 years of service
  • Any age once 25 years of service have been met
  • Reduced benefits are available after 20 years of service credit at any age

Peace Officers– employee contribution is 9%

Peace officer’s vesting period is 10 years of service credit and full benefits become available when:

  • 10 years of service have been established at age 60 and above
  • 25 years of service have been established at age 55 and above
  • 30 years of service can retire at any age
  • Reduced benefits are available after 20 years of service have been reached at any age

Alcohol and Tobacco Agents– employee contribution is 9%

The vesting is 10 years of service credit and employees may retire under the following circumstances:

  • Upon reaching age 60 with 10 years of service credit
  • At any age once 25 years of service credit have accumulated
  • Reduced benefits available after 20 years of service credit have been met at any age

Wildlife Agents– contribution is 9.5%

Vesting is a minimum of 10 years of service credit and employees may retire:

  • Hired on or before June 30, 2003 employees may retire at age 55 with 10 years service credit or any age after 25 years of credit has been established
  • Hired after July 1, 2003 employees may retire with 10 years of service credit at age 60 or at any age once 25 years has been met

Legislation– employee contribution depends on the position held within the state and ranges from 7.5% to 11.5%

Vesting begins for specific positions at 12 years of service credit and retirement may be taken:

  • 12 years of service credit at age 55 for those employed as a State Treasurer, Legislator, Governor and Lieutenant Governor or at any age after 16 years of service credit
  • 20 years of combined total service credit, with at least 12 years as a member of Legislation, State Treasurer, Governor or Lieutenant Governor and reaching age 50

Judges and Court Officers– This covers many positions within the judicial system and employee contribution rates are 11.5%

Vesting varies is after 10 years of employment and retirement may be taken:

  • Age 65 with ten years of service
  • Age 55 with 12 years of credited service
  • Any age after 18 years of service credit has been reached
  • Total combined service in state employment with at least 12 years in the judicial system may retire at age 50
  • At age 70 with any number of service credit years

Appellate Law Clerks– position contributions depending on hire date:

On or before June 30, 2006 contributes 7.5% and after July I, 2006 contribute 8%

Retirement benefits are available after the 10 year vesting period under the following conditions:

  • After 10 year vesting period has been met at age 65
  • Age 55 with 12 years service credit
  • Any age after 18 years of service credit
  • 20 years combined service credit under state employment with at least 12 years in the position
  • Age 70 regardless of service credit
  • Reduced benefits available with 20 years service year at any age

In all cases, disability benefits as well as survivor benefit options are available and vary depending in the position held within the state. The benefits are listed within the general employee Retirement Handbook. Benefits after retirement are calculated based on the LASERS employees start date:

Hired before June 30, 2006:

  • Average compensation of the highest 36 consecutive months during employment

Hired after July 1, 2006:

  • Average compensation of the highest 60 months of consecutive earnings during employment
Retirement benefits for the LSPRS program are calculated by multiplying the final average yearly salary by the number of years of service and then multiplied by a sum of 3 1/3 %

Retirement benefits for the LSPRS program are calculated by multiplying the final average yearly salary by the number of years of service and then multiplied by a sum of 3 1/3 %

Description of the TRSL Retirement program

Benefits, contributions and retirement ages depend on the public teachers date of employment with the state.

If hired before January 1, 2011:

  • Those reaching age 60 with at least 5 years of service credit or at any age after reaching 20 years may retire with 2.0% benefits

Retirement with 2.5% benefits:

  • Age 65 with 20 years of service credit
  • Age 55 with 25 years of service credit
  • Any age once the 30 years of service credit have been established

If hired after January 1, 2011:

Retirement with 2.0% benefits may begin:

  • At age 60 with 5 years of service credit
  • Any age once the 20 years of service credit have been met

For a 2.0% benefit employees may retire:

  • At age 60 with at least five years of service credit
  • Age 55 with 30 years of service credit

Benefits under Plan A, Plan B and Plan C retirement options are calculated using a formula:

The number of service credit years X the final average annual pay X the 2.0% or 2.5% benefit factor. Employee contributions are 8% of payroll.

Description of LSPRS Retirement Program

The state police retirement program has several aspects which are dependent on the employees hire date:

Contributions-

  • 9.5% if enrolled after January 1. 2011
  • 8.5% if enrolled before January 1, 2011
  • 8.0% if enrolled before January 1, 2011 and a participant in the DROP program

Employees may retire after the minimum 10 years vesting has been established at:

  • Age 50 with 10 years of service
  • Any age once 20 years of service credit have been established if hired before 1978
  • At any age once 25 years of service credit have been established if hired after September of 1978

Retirement benefits for the LSPRS program are calculated by multiplying the final average yearly salary by the number of years of service and then multiplied by a sum of 3 1/3 %.

Survivor benefits are available based on the chosen option, specific situation and years vested at the time of death. Disability benefits are also included but depend on the same factors.