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Princeton University
Office of the Dean of the Faculty

Faculty Retirement Plan FAQ

December 2010

The following frequently asked questions have been compiled to provide information and to assist you as you consider the new Faculty Retirement Plan, or any of the other faculty retirement options listed in the Faculty Retirement Options brochure. The questions and information are divided into three groupings:
  1. Questions concerning the new Faculty Retirement Plan
  2. Information concerning benefits upon retirement
  3. FAQ for Departmental Chairs

1. New Faculty Retirement Plan Questions

Q. What is the new Faculty Retirement Plan?

The new Faculty Retirement Plan is a new plan offered to retirement-eligible faculty members from the time they turn 65 through age 70 that offers a maximum bonus of 1.5 times salary payable in the next pay period after signing the retirement agreement. The bonus is age-based and declines by 0.25 AY salary each year from age 65 through age 69. Faculty members can retire at the end of the term or academic year in which they have signed the agreement. In addition, if a transition to retirement is desired, the plan allows faculty members to continue teaching on a ½ time basis for ½ pay for up to 3 years (6 terms), if they so choose. The ½ pay is set at either the faculty member’s own salary or at the average of all faculty at the same rank, whichever is higher.

In addition, the plan includes an incentive for those faculty who prefer to continue full-time teaching until retirement as late as age 70. A faculty member can qualify for a bonus equal to one year of salary at retirement by signing a retirement agreement before the end of the academic year in which he or she turns 67 and committing to transfer to emeritus status at a mutually agreed retirement date no later than the end of the academic year in which he or she turns 70. The bonus will be paid in the pay period immediately following the signing of the retirement agreement.

Q. Who is eligible for the retirement incentives offered under the Princeton Faculty Retirement Plan?

Tenured faculty members who are at least 65 years of age and who have not passed their 70th birthday with at least ten years of service are eligible for the incentives offered under the plan, provided they sign a retirement agreement and retire according to the schedule below:

Age when signing
Bonus
When bonus paid Years/semesters eligible to
teach
½ -time
                   65 1.5 x AY salary Pay period following signing Up to 3 years/6 semesters
                   66 1.25 x AY salary Pay period following signing Up to 3 years/6 semesters
                   67 1.0 x AY salary Pay period following signing Up to 2 years/4 semesters
                   68 0.75 x AY salary Pay period following signing Up to 2 years/4 semesters
                   69 0.5 x AY salary Pay period following signing Up to 1 year/2 semesters
Or, full time work until retirement:
Age when signing Bonus When bonus paid Option
Between 65th birthday and 67th birthday 1.0 x AY salary Pay period following signing Work full-time until retire before the end of the AY in which turn 70
 
When attain 70th birthday: No longer eligible for the plan

Faculty on long-term disability or who are not in good standing may not participate in the plan.

Q. If I sign a retirement agreement during the fall semester, what is the effective date of my retirement?

If you sign the retirement agreement during the fall semester, you retirement date may be February 1st or July 1st, however, if you sign an agreement during the spring semester, your retirement date will be July 1st.

Q. If I am over 70 and did not take advantage of the initial plan when it was offered, may I retire under the new plan at a later date?

No. The initial plan is a one-time transitional plan.  Faculty age 70 and over are not eligible for the new plan.

Q. Am I eligible for any incentives of the new plan if I commit to retiring after I turn 70?

No; however, you are still eligible to participate in the Basic and the Enhanced Phased Retirement Plan. These are the two phased plans that the University has offered since the 1990’s. They are not incentive plans and do not offer a bonus to retire. Rather, they are designed to provide for a transition into retirement. See the Retirement Options Brochure for further information.

Q. How much advance notice must I give for the new plan?

You must sign up for the plan by the age brackets listed in the table to qualify. We hope, for planning purposes that you will sign up for the plan at least a semester before you begin the half-time work, however, that is not a requirement. You are free to sign up for the plan in advance of age 65, selecting a retirement date in the future in accordance with the table above.

Q. What retirement bonus is offered under the new plan?

The bonus is age-based and payable as a lump-sum in the pay period immediately following the signing of the retirement agreement.

The bonus is determined as follows: it is the following multiplier of AY salary based on the faculty member’s age attained when the agreement is signed multiplied by the faculty member's current year 10-month salary or the current year's average 10-month salary for all faculty members of the same rank:

Faculty member's age 65 66 67 68 69
Bonus as a multiple of salary 1.5 1.25 1.0 0.75 0.5

In other words, the bonus is a multiple of the faculty member’s base academic salary. The FTE salary is set either through the usual process of annual review based upon the faculty members' salaries at the beginning of the period and without any penalty for serving reduced duty time, or alternatively will be the average salary of all professors of the same rank in the University, whichever is larger.

In addition, the faculty member will be eligible to continue teaching at half duty-time for half FTE salary (either their own salary or the average of rank, whichever is higher) for a number of years based on their current age according to the table:

Faculty member's age 65 66 67 68 69
Maximum academic years (semesters) of half-time teaching possible 3 AY (6 semesters) 3 AY (6 semesters) 2 AY (4 semesters) 2 AY (4 semesters) 1 AY (2 semesters)

Q. Perhaps I should wait for a “better deal.” Will the University make further enhancements to the retirement plan?

Princeton’s Faculty Retirement Plan may be terminated or changed by the University at any time, however, there are no plans to add further enhancements beyond the new plan. Faculty members should not anticipate additional retirement incentives, particularly in light of current economic conditions.

Q. I have previously signed a retirement agreement and I am wondering if I am eligible for the new plan?

No. Signed retirement agreements are binding.

Q. If I sign a retirement agreement can I change my mind later if I decide that it is not for me?

Federal regulations provide for a 7-day grace period after the signing when you may change your mind and void the agreement. After this initial 7-day period, the agreement is binding.

Q. With whom may I discuss my questions concerning retirement?

Contact Associate Dean Sandy Johnson (sandyj@princeton.edu, x8-5230) to discuss the Faculty Retirement Plan. For questions related to medical insurance, pension benefits, or other benefits issues, contact Alison Nelson, Director of Benefits in Human Resources (alisonn@princeton.edu, x8-6075). For questions regarding continued research and teaching or office or laboratory facilities, contact your department chair or dean.

Q. Whom do I notify that I plan to retire?

You may contact your department chair, Dean of the Faculty David Dobkin, or Associate Dean Sandy Johnson . Participation in the Faculty Retirement Plan requires that you sign a retirement agreement and submit it to the dean of the faculty. To find out more about the retirement agreement form, contact Associate Dean Sandy Johnson. Sandy will prepare a retirement agreement for your signature.

Q. Must I sign a retirement agreement in order to qualify for retirement under the Faculty Retirement Plan?

Yes.

Q. Where may I obtain a copy of the retirement agreement?

Please contact Associate Dean Sandy Johnson (sandyj@princeton.edu, x8-5230, ). In addition,  sample retirement agreements are available on our website.

Q. Can I change my mind once I have submitted a signed retirement agreement?

For the new plan: Faculty members have a seven (7)-day period to change their mind and revoke their agreement.

Q. Do I have to retire at the end of an academic term or year?

Yes, because of the nature of faculty work at Princeton, you must retire at the end of the term or academic year, or during the summer. You may opt to retire at the end of one of the summer months (July 31 or August 31) to enable you to receive summer salary from your grants during the summer months. If you need assistance, you may contact Associate Dean Sandy Johnson.

Q. Should I elect to participate in the New Faculty Retirement Plan?

This is a voluntary program. There is no mandatory retirement age. We can provide you with information and answer your questions about the plan to enable you to make an informed decision, but it is completely your decision when you wish to sign a retirement agreement. The decision is entirely up to you.

Q. I’m not sure I can afford to retire. Who can help me figure this out?

You should speak with representatives from TIAA-CREF and/or Vanguard who can provide you with customized illustrations of your retirement plan income. You also may want to talk with your personal financial planner or advisor.

If questions arise, please contact the following resources as a first avenue:

  • TIAA-CREF: contact the local TIAA-CREF Princeton Office at 1-800-842-8412 to speak or make an appointment with an individual counselor.
  • Vanguard: contact (800) 523-1188 to speak with a Vanguard Participant services associate, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST.

Q. Can I engage in post-retirement teaching if I elect to take the new plan?

Post-retirement teaching is determined by the department chair in consultation with the dean of the faculty based on departmental needs and constraints. Post-retirement teaching is limited to one course a year up to an overall maximum over the entire retirement of three courses. When an emeritus faculty member engages in post-retirement teaching, they are paid at the Lecturer with the rank of Professor rate and during the semester they teach they will hold the title of Lecturer with the rank of Professor in addition to their emeritus professor title.

Q. Can I be appointed as a Senior Scholar if I elect to take the new plan?

Yes. The Senior Scholar appointment is defined as follows (from Chapter III, Rules and Procedures of the Professional Researchers and Professional Specialists):

Emeritus Princeton faculty members may be appointed as Senior (by discipline) if they serve as principal investigators on sponsored research projects and/or maintain active research programs at the University.  Other distinguished retirees may be appointed to this rank on the recommendation of a department, center or institute and with the approval of the Committee on Appointments and Advancements for the Professional Researchers and Professional Specialists (C/7).

Senior (by discipline) normally have no specific responsibilities in teaching or research but are encouraged to participate in department, center and/or institute programs and to interact with faculty members, researchers, and students in informal settings. They ordinarily do not receive salaries from the University. However, on those occasions when a Senior (by discipline) is asked to provide a specific service to the University arrangements must be made in advance, through the Office of the Dean of the Faculty, to compensate him/her appropriately.  Such compensation will normally be provided through a research project grant (when the service involves participation in a sponsored research project) or a part-time teaching appointment (see Rules & Procedures of the Faculty of Princeton University). Senior (by discipline) are not eligible for stipend payments from the University.

Appointments/reappointments to the rank of Senior (by discipline) are normally for renewable one year terms. The appointments of emeritus Princeton University faculty may be renewed annually by the Dean of the Faculty on the recommendation of the sponsoring department.

Q. Can I be appointed to the Research Staff as a Senior Research Scholar if I elect to sign the New Retirement Plan?

Faculty members who can support more than 50% of their annual salary through grants and contracts can request that they be appointed to the research staff as a benefits-eligible Senior Research Scholar upon their retirement from the faculty. To pursue this option, the faculty member would relinquish their tenure on their retirement date, going to emeritus faculty status, transfer to the Research Staff as a Research Staff Member and work 50% or more duty-time as a benefits-eligible Senior Research Scholar fully supported by research funding. When faculty members choose this option—to work as a benefits-eligible Senior Research Scholar, their initial FTE salary in this rank will be a 12-month salary equivalent to their academic year salary plus 2.5 summer 9ths of salary, corresponding to 1.278 times your academic year FTE salary. A 10-month research staff appointment is also available. In the years following the initial appointment to the rank of Senior Research Scholar, the salary will be set through the annual salary review process, and will at a minimum continue at 1.278 times the average academic year salary rate of all Full Professors in the University. As a Senior Research Scholar, retired faculty will be eligible to apply for Learned Society Travel funds. Faculty who retire and who are appointed as a Senior Scholar or as a Senior Research Scholar will continue to have access to remaining funds in their 2000- accounts in support of ongoing academic activities.

Q. What happens to my “2xxx” research account under the retirement plans?

Faculty who retire under the new plan will continue to have access to remaining funds in their 2000-accounts in support of ongoing academic activities. In addition, these accounts will be supplemented by a $5,000 grant at the time of transfer to emeritus status to ease this transition.

Q. Are there any changes to the existing phased retirement plans since you are adding the new plan?

The existing plans will remain in place. However, we have made two changes to the existing phased retirement plans to make Princeton’s retirement offerings more consistent. These plans are available to all retirement-eligible faculty. The Basic Phased Retirement Plan will continue, however the maximum number of years that you can phase at 50% duty-time for 50% salary will be reduced from four years to three years. The Enhanced Phased Retirement Plan (50% duty-time teaching for 67% salary for up to two years with the provision that you must remain on campus for the full AY) is unchanged. The General Retirement Plan (which includes a bonus equal to the final year’s TIAA/CREF or Vanguard contributions for a year or more notice) remains unchanged.

Q. If I elect the option where I sign before I turn 67 and will continue full-time teaching no later than the AY in which I turn 70, am I eligible for a sabbatical leave between when I sign the agreement and when I turn 70?

Yes. However, the allocation of leaves is not an entitlement. Quota leaves are recommended by the department chair and approved by the dean of the faculty based on availability and scholarly productivity.

Q. If I sign up for the new plan and elect to engage in the up to 3 years of 50% teaching at 50% pay, can I have a leave during the period where I am 50% duty-time?

No.

Q. Will I receive Emeritus status when I retire?

It is customary to appoint tenured professors in good standing to the ranks of Professor or Associate Professor Emeritus when they retire. Upon their request, they may receive such University publications as the Princeton University Bulletin and the Princeton Alumni Weekly, as well as agendas and minutes of University Faculty Meetings. They may attend meetings of the University and departmental faculty upon invitation, but do not have votes at these meetings. Emeritus faculty members continue to receive University identification cards and to have use of the library, the athletic facilities and dining facilities on the same basis as active faculty members.

Faculty members also retain their University computing privileges when they are granted emeritus status. In particular, there is no change to their existing netid@princeton.edu e-mail address upon becoming an emeritus faculty member.

Emeritus faculty members may be assigned office space as available and as needed, although they have lower priority than active members of the faculty and staff. Other facilities may be made available to them if the facilities are not needed by active faculty members and if it is possible to provide these facilities within the constraints of departmental budgets.

Emeritus faculty members do not have regular duties on a continuing basis. They may be appointed to teach on a part-time basis for one year at a time, with the approval of the Board of Trustees for each appointment. Their teaching duties normally amount to at most a single course during any academic year. These teaching appointments carry the additional title of Lecturer with the rank of Professor. Emeritus faculty members may carry to completion the supervision of those doctoral students whom they were advising before retirement, but are not expected to take on new graduate students after retirement.

Emeritus faculty members may have additional appointments as Senior Scholars if they are principal investigators on sponsored research projects. These appointments are expected to be at a small fraction of full-time duty and may involve nominal compensation through the research grant or contract. Emeritus faculty members may accept postdoctoral fellows and other researchers to work with them. Laboratory space will continue to be made available for them so long as their research continues to be supported by outside grants and so long as their laboratory space is not needed for active faculty or staff members. Adequate notice will be given to emeritus faculty members if it is necessary to reassign their laboratory space to active faculty members.

Q. I am currently on a short-term disability leave of absence. Am I still eligible to participate in the initial plan or the new plan?

Eligible faculty members who are on a short-term disability leave of absence, or some other approved paid or unpaid leave of absence, other than long-term disability, are generally considered “active” employees. Active employees who meet the other eligibility criteria remain eligible. Inactive employees, such as those on long-term disability, are not eligible.

Should faculty members receive payments under Princeton’s Short-term Disability Plan after the last day of employment, the amount of the bonus will be reduced by the amount of the short-term disability payments received. This may affect the date the bonus payment is issued.

Q. What happens to my benefits when I retire?

Information about various benefits is summarized in the following section: Benefits for Faculty Members upon Retirement. You can also meet with a member of the Benefits Team who you can contact at x8-3302 or by email at benefits@princeton.edu if you have any questions, or you can contact Associate Dean Sandy Johnson.


2. Benefits for Faculty Members upon Retirement

Retirement dates are always the first of the month. Typically, active health benefits extend through the last day of the month prior to the retirement date. Faculty members may be able to continue their existing coverage for up to 18 months under Federal COBRA Regulations or they may switch to retiree benefits. It is important to complete the applicable election form by the last business day in which you are employed by the University since no dependents may be added to your coverage after your retirement date.

HEALTH CARE PLAN

If you are enrolled in a medical plan as an active employee your coverage ends on the last day of the month in which you terminate. Under COBRA, a federal law, you and/or your enrolled dependents may continue to participate in this plan for up to 18 months. However, you will be required to pay the full cost of the plan. You will receive further information from Crosby Benefit Systems. Please note, even if you enroll in a Princeton University retiree health care plan, you will still receive COBRA information from Crosby Benefit Systems. If you do enroll in a Princeton University retiree health care plan, you may disregard this information as it relates to continuing your employee health insurance.

If you are under age 65 at the time you retire, you may elect to participate in a retiree healthcare plan for yourself and your eligible dependents. The plans offered are the same as those offered to active employees. To elect coverage, you must complete the “Princeton Healthcare Election Form” by the last business day of the month in which you are employed by the University. No dependents may be added to your coverage after your retirement date. Upon attainment of age 65, your health care coverage will be provided under the Princeton Medicare Plan.

If you are age 65 or older at the time that you retire, your health care coverage will be provided under the Princeton Medicare Plan. To enroll, you must complete the “Princeton Healthcare Election Form” by the last business day of the month in which you are employed by the University. No dependents may be added to your coverage after your retirement date. Follow this link to the Retiree Benefits webpage for additional information: http://www.princeton.edu/hr/benefits/retiree/.

It is important to note that you will only be offered a one time opportunity to enroll in retiree medical. If you do not elect coverage at the time you retire, you will be unable to elect coverage at a future date. Further, if you ever terminate your retiree medical coverage, you will not be given an option to elect the coverage at a future date.

MEDICARE

If you are retired, upon attainment of age 65, Medicare becomes your primary medical insurance plan and the Princeton Medicare Plan will provide secondary coverage. The Princeton Medicare Plan assumes, and pays as if you are enrolled in both Parts A & B of Medicare. Three months prior to age 65, you and/or your spouse may enroll in Medicare, Parts A & B. For information on Medicare, contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213. You can speak to a service representative between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. If you have a touch-tone phone, recorded information and services are available after 7:00 p.m. weekdays and all day on weekends and holidays. You may also access the Social Security Administration’s web site: http://www.ssa.gov.

DENTAL CARE PLAN

If you are enrolled in a Dental Care Plan, as an active employee your coverage ends on the last day of the month in which you terminate. Under COBRA, a federal law, you and/or your enrolled dependents may continue to participate in this plan for up to 18 months. However, in addition to your current monthly premium, you will be required to pay a 2% administrative fee. You will receive further information from Crosby Benefit Systems. Please note, even if you enroll in a MetLife Retirement dental benefits plan, you will still receive COBRA information from Crosby Benefit Systems. If you do enroll in one of MetLife’s Retirement Dental Benefits plans, you may disregard the Crosby information as it relates to continuing your employee dental insurance.

At the time you retire, you may elect to participate in a MetLife Retirement Dental Benefits plan, for yourself and your eligible dependents. Princeton University has partnered, with MetLife to administer Retirement Dental Benefits Plans to our eligible retirees, and will be offering two options for dental coverage. They are:

  • Option 1 – covers preventative and basic dental treatment, like cleanings, X-rays and fillings.
  • Option 2 – covers some of the major, more expensive procedures like crowns and dentures in addition to preventative and basic services.

With MetLife you will have the option of visiting any dentist that is part of MetLife’s Preferred Dentist Program (PDP), or you may go out-of-network to visit any dentist of your choice. If your dentist participates in the PDP program, MetLife has negotiated fees for all services that will help save you money.

You will receive a packet of information and enrollment materials directly from MetLife regarding their Retiree Dental Benefits Plan coverage. The packet will include more detailed information on the plans, the premium rates which are based on your home zip code, as well as instructions on how to enroll.

It is important to note that you will only be offered a one time opportunity to enroll with MetLife. If you do not elect coverage at the time you retire, you will be unable to elect coverage at a future date. Further, if you ever terminate the coverage with MetLife, you will not be given an option to elect the coverage at a future date.

VISION CARE PLAN

If you are enrolled in the Vision Care Plan as an active employee your coverage ends on the last day of the month in which you terminate. Under COBRA, a federal law, you and/or your enrolled dependents may continue to participate in this plan for up to 18 months. However, in addition to your current monthly premium, you will be required to pay a 2% administrative fee. You will receive further information from Crosby Benefit Systems. Please note, even if you enroll in a Princeton University retiree vision service plan, you will still receive COBRA information from Crosby Benefit Systems. If you do enroll in a Princeton University retiree vision services plan, you may disregard the Crosby information as it relates to continuing your employee vision insurance.

At the time you retire, you may elect to participate in a retiree vision care plan for yourself and your eligible dependents. The plan offered is administered by Vision Service Plan (VSP) and is similar to the employee vision plan. To enroll, you must complete the “Princeton Healthcare Election Form” by the last business day of the month in which you are employed by the University. You may also elect coverage during the Annual Open Enrollment period each year. Once enrolled, you may not terminate your retiree vision coverage mid-year. (See summary sheet on Vision Care Benefits – Retirees for more detailed information.)

RETIREMENT PLAN

A. Princeton University Retirement Plan

Under this plan, the University has been making contributions on your behalf to TIAA-CREF and/or Vanguard. Upon retirement, you may elect to begin receiving a benefit from all or a portion of your accumulation, or to defer receipt until the April 1 following the calendar year in which you attain age 70½.

Faculty members who are between the ages of 55 and 69½ may begin to draw down the interest on the total accumulations invested in their TIAA contracts through the TIAA Interest Payment Retirement Option (IPRO). Those faculty members who are on active service and are drawing down their TIAA account, continue to receive University contributions to these accounts based upon the University retirement plan. Both salary and annuity payments are considered as taxable income. Faculty members who are planning to retire should consult the Office of Human Resources for more detailed information about the procedures and about their own retirement accounts. They may also telephone the TIAA-CREF Telephone Counseling Information Center directly (800-842-2776) for information about their own accounts and for projections of their retirement income.

TIAA-CREF and Vanguard offer a range of payment options. You may also elect to provide a benefit to a designated beneficiary upon your death. In addition, a cash withdrawal of up to 100% of your total CREF and/or Vanguard accumulation is available if you have attained age 55. Contact TIAA-CREF directly at 1-800-842-2776 or Vanguard at 1-800-523-1188 for additional information on payment options and for overall retirement planning assistance.

B. Tax Deferred Annuity Plan

If you participate in this plan, you made voluntary pretax contributions to Group Supplemental Retirement Annuity (GSRA) contracts, Retirement Annuity (RA) contracts, or mutual funds with TIAA-CREF and/or Vanguard. Upon retirement, you may elect to begin receiving a benefit from all or a portion of your accumulation, or defer receipt until the April 1 following the calendar year in which you attain age 70½. TIAA-CREF and Vanguard offer a range of payment options. You may also elect to provide a benefit to a designated beneficiary upon your death. In addition, you may receive a lump sum payment of all or a portion of your accumulation. Contact TIAA-CREF directly at 1-800-842-2776 or Vanguard at 1-800-523-1188 for additional information on retirement income options and for overall retirement planning assistance.

You may also access information at TIAA-CREF’s web site (http://www.tiaa-cref.org) and Vanguard’s web site (http://www.vanguard.com).

LIFE INSURANCE PLAN

Coverage under the Basic Life Insurance Plan and or the Supplemental Life Insurance Plan (if enrolled) ends on your date of termination. You will have 31 days in which you may convert all or a portion of the value of your Basic Life Insurance Plan or Supplemental Life Insurance Plan (if enrolled) to an individual whole life insurance policy without providing medical evidence of insurability. The conversion form is available from the HR website: http://www.princeton.edu/hr/benefits/benforms/life_conversion_form.pdf or from the Benefits Team (8-3302). You may call Prudential Life Insurance at 877-889-2070 for plan and rate information.

Coverage under the Accidental Death & Dismemberment portion of the plan ends on your retirement date. You cannot convert this coverage to an individual policy.

TEMPORARY DISABILITY PLAN

Coverage under the Temporary Disability Plan ends 14 days following the last day of the month in which you are employed with the University. If you should become disabled during this 14-day period, please call the Office of Human Resources for information on coverage under the plan.

LONG TERM DISABILITY INSURANCE PLAN

Your coverage under the Long Term Disability Insurance Plan ends on your retirement date. You cannot convert this coverage to an individual policy.

EXPENSE ACCOUNT PLANS

A. Health Benefit Expense Account Plan (HBEA)

If you are enrolled in this plan, you may submit claims for reimbursement of eligible expenses incurred during the entire calendar year in which you retire. Claims for reimbursement of eligible expenses may be filed until March 31 of the calendar year following your date of retirement.

B. Dependent Care Expense Account Plan (DCEA)

If you are enrolled in this plan, your account will remain active for 31 days following the last day of the month in which you are employed with the University. Expenses incurred after the 31-day extension period will not be eligible for reimbursement. Only the amount contributed through your final paycheck is available for reimbursement. No pre-funding is available. Claims for reimbursement of eligible expenses may be filed until March 31 of the calendar year following your date of retirement.

CHILDREN'S EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE PLAN

A. Tuition Grant Program

A Tuition Grant will continue to be provided to a child who is participating in the program on your retirement date and meets the eligibility requirements. Continuing eligibility for benefits will terminate if the child no longer meets the eligibility criteria.

B. Supplemental Loan Program

You must continue to repay any existing Supplemental Loans. Please call the Loans and Receivables Department in the Office of the Treasurer at (609) 258-7220 to make arrangements for direct repayment.

UNIVERSITY ID CARD

You and your eligible dependents (spouse, domestic partner, children under age 25) may continue to hold a University ID card. Each year you will be sent a validation sticker for the card. Call the University ID Office at (609) 258-5436 for additional information.

MORTGAGE LOAN PROGRAM

University mortgages and the tenancy-in-common (co-ownership) program continue for those faculty members holding mortgages at the time of their retirement, so long as the mortgaged property remains the primary residence. After retirement, mortgage payments are made by direct payments rather than by salary deduction. Retired faculty members whose mortgage balance is at most 50% of the current market value of their houses may elect to pay only the interest on the mortgage, leaving the principal unchanged. New mortgages are not granted to retired faculty members.

This program is administered by the Real Estate Office. Contact the Real Estate office at (609) 258-3123 for information.

PARKING

You remain eligible for a University parking permit. You must apply for a decal in the Office of Public Safety upon expiration of your current decal. Call the Parking Office at (609) 258-3157 for additional information.

PRINCETON UNIVERSITY BULLETIN

The Princeton University Bulletin will continue to be mailed to you at your home address. If you do not wish to continue receiving this publication, please notify either the Office of the Dean of the Faculty or the Office of Human Resources in writing. Please include your name, address and date of birth.

SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS and MEDICARE

You are eligible to begin receiving a benefit at age 62. Contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 to verify your earnings record, receive a personalized benefit calculation, obtain information on Medicare, or obtain the address and hours of your nearest Social Security office. You can speak to a service representative between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. If you have a touch tone phone, recorded information and services are available after 7:00 p.m. on weekdays and all day on weekends and holidays. You may also access the Social Security Administration’s web site (http://www.ssa.gov).

CHANGE OF ADDRESS

If you should move, please notify the Office of Human Resources in writing. Please include your name, date of birth, old and new address and telephone number. This information will also enable you to continue to receive the Princeton Weekly Bulletin. You must notify TIAA-CREF directly in writing of any address changes.

COMPUTER ACCOUNT

I. Access to email address and box

All University retirees may be eligible to continue to receive email sent to your University email address through services you purchase with an Internet Service Provider (ISP) such as AOL or Verizon. Email sent to your University mailbox through the ISP will be sent to netID@princeton.edu. In order to retain your email address, you must have your department manager submit the online form on your behalf. The online form is located on OIT’s web site at https://opm.princeton.edu/forms/restricted/dcu.html.

Emeritus faculty do NOT need to complete the above mentioned form. Faculty will automatically retain their University computing privileges when they are granted emeritus status. There will be no change to their existing netID@princeton.edu email address upon becoming an emeritus faculty member.

II. Department-sponsored remote access

In certain circumstances you may also be eligible for a department-sponsored remote access account. In order to have remote access to the University email system, and to other University computing resources, several requirements must be met.

  1. You must be appointed through the Office of the Dean of the Faculty or a monthly-paid staff member appointed through the Office of Human Resources.
  2. You must have a continuing professional or business relationship to your department. For example, you will be doing work for the University and your access will be used solely for work relating to University business.
  3. Your department must agree to pay the regular monthly charge for the remote access.

The University intends to continue each of the benefit plans. However, it reserves the right to terminate or amend any Plan at any time and for any reason.

Additional Q and A's concerning Benefits

Q. Will my children continue to receive Children’s Educational Assistance Plan Benefits if I retire under of the Faculty Incentivized Retirement Plan?

The treatment of these benefits is no different whether you retire under the New Retirement Plan or retire under any circumstance. A tuition grant will continue to be provided to a child who is participating in the program on your retirement date and continues to meet the eligibility requirements. Continuing eligibility for benefits will terminate if the child no longer meets the eligibility criteria. If your child is receiving educational assistance when you retire, this assistance will continue as long as your child remains continuously enrolled. If your child has not yet started the educational assistance plan when you retire, they are not eligible for the plan.

Q. How long can I remain in University rental housing?

After your retirement, rental housing arrangements for emeritus faculty members are determined on a case-by-case basis. Please contact Coe Evans, assistant director of housing for faculty and staff, at (609) 258-2555 for additional information.

Q. When am I eligible for Social Security benefits?

Full Social Security benefits begin at different times, depending upon the year in which you were born. Contact your local Social Security office, visit the website at http://www.ssa.gov or review your annual Social Security Statement for more information.

Q. When will I be eligible for Medicare?

Individuals become eligible for Medicare at age 65. You should contact Social Security to apply for Medicare benefits within three months prior to the month in which you turn age 65 to avoid a premium penalty. As Princeton’s retiree medical plans assume you are participating in both Parts A & B of Medicare, it is important that you sign up for Medicare when you are eligible.

Q. Does Princeton provide any assistance with planning for retirement?

Princeton utilizes TIAA/CREF, Vanguard and Carebridge resources to provide assistance with retirement planning. Planning is best done early on—decades before retirement. If questions arise, please contact the following resources as a first avenue:

  • TIAA-CREF: contact the local TIAA-CREF Princeton Office at 1-800-842-8412 to speak or make an appointment with an individual counselor.
  • Vanguard: contact (800) 523-1188 to speak with a Vanguard Participant services associate, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST. 
  • Carebridge: contact Carebridge at (800) 437-0911. A Carebridge representative is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

3. FAQ for Department Chairs

Q. How will departments benefit from the new retirement plan?

The plan should provide a boost for faculty renewal. Departments will retain the position vacated by the retiring faculty member and can fill it at the assistant professor level. If retiring faculty members choose early retirement dates that are too early to easily be accommodated in departmental planning, the dean of the faculty will assist the department by allowing departments to hire visitors as needed during the transition.

Q. How will I know which faculty members are eligible to participate in the new plan?

New plan: All retirement-eligible faculty members aged 65 and above to less than 70. Once a faculty member turns 70, he or she is no longer eligible for the plan.

Q. Can I encourage my eligible faculty members to participate in the new plan?

Full and associate professors are tenured and retirement and the relinquishment of tenure is a very serious life step. That being said, I believe you should provide each eligible faculty member with the factual information included in this document and in other materials prepared for the new plan and the other faculty retirement plans. Under no circumstances should chairs create pressure or the appearance of pressure for their faculty that they should participate in any plan and retire. This is a voluntary program and the decision must be made solely by the individual and his/her family.

Q. My faculty member would like to retire in the next couple of years and wants to know if the new plan will be available in the future?

The new plan went into effect July 1, 2010 and we anticipate that it will continue through the foreseeable future, at least several years. However, the new plan is only available to faculty members who are 65 or older and who have not turned 70. When they pass their 70th birthday, they are no-longer eligible for the new plan. Also, the new plan is designed to give them the maximum bonus when the faculty member signs at age 65 (1.5 years of FTE salary). The bonus declines with the faculty member’s age so that at age 69 it is only ½ year of FTE salary.

Q. How will I know if a faculty member decides to retire?

The department chair will be copied on the signed retirement agreement as soon as the faculty member signs the agreement.

Q. Can the faculty member change his/her mind once they have submitted a signed retirement agreement?

Because the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act provides employees who are 40 years of age or older with a seven (7)-day period within to change their mind and revoke their signature, they will have a seven-day revocation period after they sign and return their retirement agreement.

Q. If a faculty member retires under the new plan, are there any limitations on post-retirement teaching?

Post-retirement teaching is determined by the department chair in consultation with the dean of the faculty, based on departmental needs and constraints. Post-retirement teaching is normally limited to one course a year up to an overall maximum over the entire retirement of three courses. When an emeritus faculty member engages in post-retirement teaching, they are paid at the Lecturer with the rank of Professor rate and during the term they teach they will hold the title of Lecturer with the rank of Professor in addition to their emeritus professor title.

Q. What arrangements can be made concerning office space?

We have left the provision of office space generally up to the department. Some departments have flexibility to provide office space while others have no flexibility whatsoever. There is a very small stock of centrally-allocated emeritus faculty office space monitored by the Office of the Provost. The rule concerning office space is “use it or lose it.” Emeritus faculty members who are not utilizing their office space will see the space reassigned.

Updated: December 2, 2010