Bruce Rauner, Governor
You may retire:
• At age 55 with 26 years of credited service.
• At age 55 with 10 years of credited service (reduced 1/2 of 1% for each month under age 60). If you take a reduced benefit, it is effective through - out your retirement.
• At age 60 with 10 years of credited service.
• At age 62 with 6 years of credited service.
Your benefit is based on your final salary and your total credited service, and is paid monthly for your lifetime. You must apply for benefits in order to receive them.
Contact JRS approximately 30 days before your retirement date. Your pension will start on the first day following your withdrawal from service. The maximum pension payable to a JRS member is 85% of final salary as a judge.
Your retirement benefit is based on your salary and credited service on your last day of service using the following formula:
3.5% for the first 10 years of service
5.0% for each year after 10 years
A member is age 60, has 20 years of credited service, and a final salary of $136,546:
First 10 years x 3.5% = 35%
Second 10 years x 5% = 50%
Total = 85%
85.0% x $136,546 = $116,064.10 annually or $9,672.01 per month. This member’s retirement benefit at age 58 is $102,136.41 annually or $8,511.37 per month because of the 1/2 of 1% reduction.
If you continue service as a judge after completing 20 years of judicial service and are under age 60, you can accrue 5/12% credit for each month over 20 years. This credit will offset any reduction you may incur if you retire before age 60.
Reciprocal service can be used to determine a member’s eligibility for the 85% maximum benefit.
Example: A member is age 58 years and 6 months and has 262 months (21.8 years) of judicial service. The age reduction is 1/2 of 1% for each month under age 60.
60 58 1/2 = 1 1/2 yrs X 12 mo. = 18 mo.
18 mo. X .5 = 9% reduction in benefit credit
262 mo. 240 mo. = 22 mo.
22 X 5/12 = 9.1667% credit
9% reduction 9.1667% credit = No Reduction
If you are age 60 and qualify for the 85% maximum retirement annuity, you can choose to limit contributions. You would no longer pay full contributions to JRS. Instead, you would only make contributions based on future salary increases.
Limiting your contributions is irrevocable. Benefits are based on your final salary at withdrawal from service.
You will receive a 3% pension increase on January 1 following your first full year of retirement. These annual increases are compounded on your previous year’s annuity. Pension increases are not limited to the 85% maximum.
Example: Using the previous example of a member age 60 with 20 years of credited service and a final salary of $136,546 and an initial retirement annuity of $116,064.10, the automatic 3% increase is:
3% x $116,064.10 = $3,481.92 annually or $290.16 more per month
The new annuity is $119,546.02 annually or $9,962.17 per month. The following year, the 3% increase is based on $119,546.02.
If you return to service as a judge, your retirement benefit is suspended if:
• You retired using the Reciprocal Act and return to a position which causes your Reciprocal benefit to be suspended, your judicial benefit will also be suspended.
Your JRS benefit will continue if you:
• Return to work for a county and did not originally retire under the Reciprocal Act.
• Teach at a junior college or university.
• Accept private employment.
• Work for the state in any temporary position, except judge, for 75 days or less per calender year.
If you are recalled as a judge, your retirement annuity will be suspended. After returning to retirement, your benefit is reinstated with an increase based on your additional judicial service.
If you retired with the maximum annuity and return to service as a judge, upon returning to retirement, you will be given the 3% automatic benefit increase for any January during your recall service.
If your recall service is at a higher rate of pay, your additional benefit is based on the higher rate.
Click here to see the list of systems that participate in the Retirement Systems' Reciprocal Act.