Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Overview

Active Employees

 

Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccine

LACERS has received inquiries regarding the proposed COVID-19 vaccination mandate and it’s possible effects on retirement benefits should a member refuse to be vaccinated. Please note, there have been no changes to the administration of retirement benefits. Please follow up with your department’s Personnel Section for more information regarding any further information regarding the vaccination mandate.

LACERS will continue to administer retirement benefits as prescribed in the Los Angeles Administration Code. There have been no changes to retirement benefits due to discussions about mandatory reporting of COVID vaccination and/or the possible vaccination mandate.

 

What happens to my retirement benefit if I decide to leave the City?

If you are not currently eligible for a Service Retirement but are thinking of terminating City Service, you may still be eligible for certain benefits from LACERS. Your eligibility for these benefits will depend on the amount of Continuous Service you have when you leave City Service. 

For information on leaving City Service prior to retiring, please visit the following link: Separating City Service.

How do I know if I am eligible for a Service Retirement or not?

Find out your membership, tier status, and retirement eligibility by reviewing this section on Eligibility.

If I choose to retire and I am not vaccinated for COVID-19 can I still be part of a LACERS Health Plan?

Yes, COVID-19 vaccination status has no affect on whether or not you can participate in a LACERS Health Plan as a retiree. For information on current LACERS health plans, please review the Health Benefits Guide.

The Layoff Process and Retirement Benefits

Concerned about potentially being laid-off? Depending on your years of City Service and Tier Membership, there are different options available regarding your retirement benefits.

Note: Please contact LACERS immediately if you receive a layoff notice to review your options.

What happens to my retirement contributions when I am no longer employed by the City?

If you are full-time and have less than five years of Continuous City Service, you may:

  • Leave your contributions on deposit with LACERS; or
  • Take a refund of your contributions plus accrued interest, if you take a refund of your contributions, LACERS is required to withhold taxes and you may also be subject to additional tax penalties; or
  • Roll your funds over to another qualified retirement plan.

If you withdraw or roll over your contributions, and also participate in the LACERS Larger Annuity Program, you will also be required to withdraw or roll over those funds.

If you are full-time and have five or more years of Continuous City Service, were a part-time contributing member of LACERS, or have vested status through Reciprocity, you may:

  • Apply for retirement if you are eligible (See Eligibility under Understanding Your Retirement at LACERS.org); or
  • Leave your contributions on deposit with LACERS until you are eligible for a Deferred- Service Retirement; or
  • Take a refund of your contributions plus accrued interest; or
  • Roll your funds over to another qualified retirement plan.

If you withdraw your contributions and also participate in the LACERS Larger Annuity Program, you will also be required to withdraw or roll over those funds.

How long may I leave my funds on deposit with LACERS?

Your funds can remain on deposit with LACERS until you reach age 73, at which time the Internal Revenue Code requires you begin withdrawing funds from your account (required minimum distribution) or incur tax penalties.

If I am a full-time employee, and have less than five years of Continuous City Service, is there anything I can do to meet the five-year Continuous City Service requirement to qualify for a retirement benefit?

If you worked for another California governmental agency, you may qualify for reciprocity which may allow you to use your combined years of service from both agencies toward vesting and/or becoming eligible for a retirement allowance. If you have received a layoff notice, but your actual termination date has not passed, you may be able to purchase City Service to help you reach the five years of Continuous Service requirement. (See LACERS.org for information on Reciprocity rules and Service Buybacks)

Can I continue to pay for, and participate in, the Family Death Benefit Plan (FDBP) after I separate from City service?

No, you must be an active City employee to participate in the FDBP. However, should you return to City service in the future, you may resume your participation in the FDBP.

If I’m officially notified that I will be laid-off, but not yet terminated, can I still retire?

If you are eligible for a service retirement, you may be able to apply after you receive your layoff notice, but before the actual termination date.

Please refer to eligibility requirements based upon your Tier Membership located here.

When I’m officially terminated, can I still retire?

If you are off the active payroll and you are eligible to retire, you may immediately apply for a Deferred-Service Retirement.

Please refer to eligibility requirements based upon your Tier Membership located here.

I think I may qualify for a disability retirement benefit; what are the eligibility requirements?

If you become physically or mentally disabled while an active LACERS member and believe you may qualify for a disability retirement, please contact us to review your options.

Will purchasing service credit change my layoff status?

No. Purchasing service credit will only enhance your retirement benefits or help you meet eligibility requirements for retirement.

If I withdraw my retirement contributions, plus interest, will I be eligible for any type of retirement benefit from LACERS?

No. Once you withdraw your retirement contributions, you forfeit your rights to any previously earned or potential future retirement benefits. However, if you later return to City service, you may be allowed to redeposit your contributions, plus interest, and may be able to qualify for a benefit later.

What other resources are available to me during this time?

Please visit the City of Los Angeles’ Personnel website at https://per.lacity.org/ to access resources and more information about the layoff process.

Can I change my MyLACERS account to my personal email address on my own?

Yes. The option to change your email address in your MyLACERS account is in the profile section. LACERS recommends you have a personal email address on file so that you can access MyLACERS once you retire.

If I use sick time at 75%, does that affect my retirement compensation rate?

No, it does not have an effect on your compensation rate.

If my retirement date is scheduled for next year, will pay raises be considered for my payout and retirement allowance?

Yes. Your highest consecutive 12 months of salary will determine your retirement allowance. Please check with your Department regarding any payouts for which you may be eligible.

How is my retirement allowance taxed?

Your retirement allowance is subject to both Federal and State taxes. Please consult a tax professional for additional information.

When will I receive my first retirement check?

You should receive your first retirement check at the end of the month following the month of your retirement, provided you returned your complete retirement packet on time. You can check the payment schedule here

Is my LACERS monthly retirement allowance deposited into the same account that I have now?

Your active employee direct deposit authorization does not carry over to LACERS. You will need to complete a new Direct Deposit Authorization form when you retire.

When do I get my first LACERS’ COLA?

COLA adjustments are applied in July of each year and are reflected on the benefit payment for that month. COLAs will be pro-rated for anyone who was not retired for the entire year prior to the COLA being applied. For more information on the COLA, click here

Will my new sick time accrual, vacation and/or overtime be paid upon retirement or later?

Any sick, vacation, or overtime accrual is paid by your employing department. Please contact your employing department for information on these payouts.

Who can I contact if I have general retirement questions?

You can contact LACERS Member Service Center at (800) 779-8328 or send your question via email to lacers.services@lacers.org.

I submitted documents to LACERS before and LACERS acknowledged receipt of those documents. Do I need to resubmit?

Yes. Please resubmit all required documents with your retirement packet.

Where do you get the LACERS Special Durable Power of Attorney form?

Please access the LACERS Special Durable Power of Attorney form.

I have questions about my Buyback; who do I contact?

Please call LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and ask to speak to a Buyback Counselor.

Can I expedite my service purchase buyback?

You can expedite your service buyback by thoroughly reading the information sheets, providing complete and thorough answers on the forms, responding immediately to questions, and consolidating your questions (preferably by email) to minimize the number of communications back and forth to your buyback counselors. 

I have questions about my Health Plan in Retirement; where can I find out more information?

Please visit our YouTube channel and view the Health Videos. If you have additional questions, they will be answered in the Health Zoom Meeting you will have approximately one month before your retirement date. After your retirement application has been processed, a health benefits counselor will contact you and assist you with your questions.

When will I need to enroll in Health Benefits for retirement?

You will enroll in Health Coverage during the Retirement Process. Your retiree health coverage becomes effective the first day of the month following your retirement effective date.

When and how do I enroll in the retiree medical and/or dental (health) plans?

Your LACERS health plan coverage is separate from your Active Employee benefits coverage and you will need to transition to LACERS’ medical and/or dental coverage during the retirement process. Once your retirement paperwork has been approved, LACERS will send you health-specific enrollment material via email or US mail, a link to a video on how to complete your health enrollment documents, and an invitation to an optional health question-and-answer webinar. In the meantime, information regarding retiree health benefits, subsidies, and premiums are found in our Health Benefits Guide found online at lacers.org, under Retirees/Health Benefits. Note that LACERS’ health plan premiums, plan design, and subsidies are subject to change each year, and the updated Health Benefits Guide is usually available on our website in early October. Retirees must enroll in LACERS’ plans within 60 days of their retirement date. Other health questions may be referred to lacers.health@lacers.org.

How much will the retiree medical and dental plans cost, who can enroll, and what are my subsidies?

Medical and dental plan premiums (costs) are based on the plan(s) you choose and the number of people you enroll. Eligible dependents (spouse/domestic partner, children under 26, etc.) may be enrolled in retiree plans. In order to receive a subsidy, you must be age 55 with 10 years of Service. The subsidies you receive are based on Medicare status and years of City Service/Service Credit. Retirees with 25 or more years of Service Credit are eligible for the maximum subsidies, but depending on your plan choices and who you enroll, the subsidies may not cover the costs and the difference will be deducted from your retirement allowance. Details regarding plan costs, subsidies, benefits, dependents, and charges for medical/dental coverage are available in the Health Benefits Guide and at lacers.org under Forms and Information Sheets, under Information Sheets, Your LACERS Health Plan Subsidy.

I have questions about Medicare; where can I find out more information?

Please visit our YouTube channel and view the Medicare Videos. If you have additional questions they will be answered in the Health Zoom Meeting you will have approximately one month before your retirement date. After your retirement application has been processed, a health benefits counselor will contact you and assist you with your questions.

How much of a difference is there in my retirement benefit between Cash Refund and Life Annuity allowance options?

This information will be reflected in the estimate that you will receive in your retirement packet. You can also create your own retirement estimates by accessing your MyLACERS account.

Can I transfer my sick and vacation time payouts to Deferred Compensation?

Please contact Deferred Comp at www.la457.com regarding your rollover options.

What is the maximum number of sick hours that is paid out when retiring?

Sick and vacation payouts are handled by your employing department. Please contact your employing department and your MOU.

My Domestic Partnership is on file with Employee Benefits. Do I need to have one on file with LACERS?

Yes, your filing with Employee Benefits covers your active employee City benefits. You need to register your Domestic Partnership with LACERS for your retirement related benefits.

Are copies of the original divorce decrees or birth certificates accepted?

Yes. Please submit copies of the original documents and not originals as they will not be returned to you.

Who should I contact to discuss payroll deductions that I want to continue into retirement?

If you have any deductions that you want to continue in retirement, you will want to reach out to the individual agency, i.e. LAFCU, ACEBSA, City Employees Club, etc. 

How do I apply for life insurance for retirement?

LACERS does not offer life insurance. You should check with Employee Benefits through the Personnel Department to see if your active life insurance policy is portable.

What happens with the Union’s insurance when I retire?

Please contact your Union for further information.

Stock Market Volatility

How does the condition of the stock market affect my retirement benefit?

Although the benefits are paid based on Member contributions, the City contributions, and LACERS’ investments returns, your retirement benefit is calculated based on a set formula: Retirement Factor X Service Credit X Final Average Compensation. Fluctuations in the stock market do not impact the amount of monthly benefits you receive.

Should I wait to retire?

The decision to retire depends on each Member’s situation and readiness. Please contact us at (800) 779-8328 to inquire about retirement eligibility or assistance with a retirement estimate.

How does the condition of the stock market affect my Larger Annuity account?

If you elected the five-year Treasury Note option, your return is based on the performance of the five-year Treasury Note. If you elected LACERS publicly-traded asset option, your return is based on LACERS publicly traded asset performance, which may be impacted by the market fluctuations.

What happens if LACERS runs out of money?

It would be nearly impossible for LACERS to run out of money since funding of the plan comes from 3 sources: required annual contributions from the City, required bi-weekly contributions from employees, and investment returns. Funding levels of the plan are routinely monitored to ensure LACERS’ ability to provide retirement benefits over the long term.

Historically, what happened with LACERS investments when the stock market “crashed”?

The value of LACERS portfolio also declined, but less so than the stock market. This is due to the portfolio diversification across different types of investments such as stocks, bonds, and real estate. In other words, LACERS does not put all of its eggs in one basket. Diversification helps ensure that sufficient assets are available to provide retirement benefits over the long term.

Address Changes

How do I update my mailing address with LACERS?

LACERS receives your mailing address through the City’s payroll system. If you’ve updated your address through your department’s Personnel Section, it will automatically be updated in LACERS’ system.

If you are no longer employed by the City of Los Angeles, but still have funds in your LACERS account, submit LACERS’ Change of Address request, available here.

Beneficiaries

How do I designate my Beneficiary?

Beneficiary information on file with Employee Benefits is not automatically shared with LACERS. To update your beneficiary, submit a designation of beneficiary form. Download the form and read additional important information about designating beneficiaries on the Designating Beneficiaries page.

How can I view my Beneficiaries on file?

Log into your MyLACERS account to view your beneficiaries on file.

Buybacks/Service Credit Purchases

How can I purchase time to increase my retirement benefit?

If you are interested in purchasing time with LACERS, your process will vary depending on the type of time you have available to purchase. 

Visit Supplementing Your Retirement for more information.

Divorce/Dissolution of Marriage

Do I need to submit my divorce decree to LACERS?

LACERS will require a copy of your final judgment. Please visit the page on divorce for more information.

Domestic Partnership

Employee Benefits has my Domestic Partnership information. Do I need to submit information to LACERS also?

Filing a Declaration of Domestic Partnership with Personnel Department, Employee Benefits section is not sufficient to cover the administration of benefits with LACERS. Please visit the Domestic Partnership page for more details.

Early Retirement Incentive Program (ERIP)

What is the total number of ERIP participants?

There are 2,400 ERIP participants.

What is the ERIP Cost Obligation?

The ERIP Cost Obligation is the full cost of ERIP as defined in the Los Angeles Administrative Code section 4.1033 (“ERIP Ordinance”). The ERIP Ordinance states that the ERIP Cost Obligation is the obligation of LACERS Members, and that the City and Unions envisioned ERIP to be cost-neutral to the City.

How was the ERIP Cost Obligation determined?

The preliminary ERIP Cost Obligation was determined by an enrollment actuary engaged by the City, pursuant to requirements of the Los Angeles City Charter section 1168 (b), which specifies that the City Council must be advised in writing of the cost of benefit increases prior to adoption of an ordinance to change the LACERS benefit(s).

The City’s Consulting Actuary provided cost estimates of ERIP based on various scenarios projecting “take” rates of eligible employees. Preliminary projected costs ranged from $250 million to retire 2,229 employees up to $354 million to retire 2,763. The ERIP Ordinance adopted a preliminary cost of $271M to retire 2,400 employees.

However, based on the LACERS actuarial valuation report of June 30, 2009 (revised April 22, 2010), the unfunded actuarial accrued liability increased by $355 million when factoring in nearly all ERIP retirees (2,393 of the 2,400 ERIP retirees were finalized at the time of the report).

What is the time period by which the ERIP Cost Obligation should be paid?

For Tier 1 Active Members, according to the ERIP Ordinance, the employee contributions toward the ERIP Cost Obligation begin on July 1, 2011, and end on June 30, 2026 (a 15-year period), or until the ERIP Cost Obligation is fully paid, whichever comes first.

For Retired Members, according to the ERIP Ordinance, an ERIP 1% Reduction shall apply to all ERIP Eligible Filers and Grandfathered Participants receiving ERIP benefits. His or her entire retirement allowance, shall be reduced by 1%.

The ERIP 1% Reduction shall not apply to members of ERIP Group 4.

How much money to date, has been paid by LACERS’ Members toward paying off the ERIP Cost Obligation?

For the quarter ending March 31, 2024, Tier 1 Members have contributed over $287M toward the cost of this liability, estimated at $355M. Employee contributions of 1% of salary go towards the ERIP Cost Obligation, which began on July 1, 2011, and will end on June 30, 2026 (a 15-year period), or until the full actuarial cost of the program is paid, whichever comes first.

Furlough Information: Full-Time (72+ hour) Employees

Will mandatory furloughs affect my retirement benefits?
No. Taking furlough day(s) will not impact your retirement benefits because your benefit is determined by your Compensation Earnable, which is the amount your classification earns for 80 hours in a pay period regardless of the number of hours for which you are compensated.

If I am earning less money because of the furlough days, why won’t my retirement benefits be impacted?
Your retirement allowance is based on the following formula: Service Credit x Final Compensation x 0.0216.

Service Credit – This is determined by the amount of time you have worked as a member of LACERS and made contributions to your retirement account per Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) 4.1001. As long as you work enough hours to cover the costs of your full retirement contribution and any other payroll deductions (this very likely will not be an issue with two furlough days per month), you will continue to earn the same amount of Service Credit with or without furlough days.

Final Compensation – This is the average of the last 12 months (or any other 12 consecutive month period you designate) of Compensation Earnable in your classification and will not be affected by furlough days. “Compensation Earnable” is the amount your classification earns for full-time service (LAAC 4.1001). Taking furlough days will reduce the amount of money you earn, but it will not reduce your Compensation Earnable. Because furlough days will not impact your Service Credit or your Final Compensation, they will have no impact on your retirement allowance.

Do I still have to make my full retirement contribution if I am taking mandatory furlough days? 
Yes. Your retirement contribution is calculated based on your compensation earnable for your specific classification (LAAC 4.1003). Your compensation earnable is the full salary, wage or compensation established for any position or office in the City service (LAAC 4.1001). Your retirement contribution and service credit will remain the same whether your work 72 hours or 80 hours in a pay period

While I understand mandatory furlough days will not affect my retirement benefits, it will reduce my salary. Can I borrow from my retirement account?
No. The Los Angeles Administrative Code does not provide LACERS the authority to allow members to borrow from their LACERS accounts.

Do I have to take furlough days?
Please check with your department’s Personnel Section to determine if you are required to take any furlough days.

Does LACERS have any services that will help me cope with the salary reduction of mandatory furlough days?
If you are facing other specific problems and feel you need assistance, the City’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provides help and counseling for a variety of issues. The EFAP can be contacted 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by their toll-free line at (800) 213-5813. Their website is also available for information at: www.liveandworkwell.com, company code: CityofLA

Medicare

I am already over age 65 but I am still working for the City. Do I need to apply for Medicare? 

If you are still working at age 65 and are covered by the City’s (“Active”) medical plan, you can defer enrollment in Medicare until you retire. During your retirement process, LACERS Staff will provide you with additional documentation to take to Social Security to waive any late enrollment penalties.

For additional information on Medicare after retirement, please visit the Retirees Medicare Information page.

Retirement Application Portal – Tier 1 Normal and Early Service Retirements Only

What steps should I take prior to using the Retirement Application Portal (RAP)?

Here are some key steps to take before accessing the RAP:

  • Attend a Planning for Retirement Seminar to learn about your benefits. Register for these webinars via your MyLACERS account here.
  • Download a Decision Sheet here and start to review the decisions you will be making.
  • If you have a MyLACERS account and don’t plan on leaving a continuance of more than 50% you can download a retirement estimate at any time on your own from MyLACERS.
  • 90 days prior to your anticipated retirement date, call LACERS at (800) 779-8328 to notify us of your intent to retire, request a retirement benefit estimate (if you don’t already have one from MyLACERS) and to register for a Retirement Counseling session, and a Health Counseling session.

For more information regarding the retirement process using the RAP, click here.

What is the web address for me to access RAP? 

The portal can be accessed at retire.lacers.org.

I don’t have a scanner to scan my documents; what do I do?

Consider the Adobe Scan free mobile app. The app works on your mobile device, scans documents into PDFs, and automatically recognizes text. Learn more here.

What happens after I submit my application?

Once you have submitted your application, a retirement counselor will be assigned to you, and you may contact them for updates or questions about your application. You can also visit retire.lacers.org to check your status at any time.

What if I make a mistake or a typographical error while completing my application?

You will have the opportunity to perform a final verification before your application is submitted. If you discover a mistake after you submit your application, please notify your retirement counselor to have the mistake manually corrected.

How long will it take me to complete my online application?

Most Members will complete their application within one hour.

How do I return to an application I started but did not finish?

You can login to your RAP account and continue to enter the rest of your information and finalize as many times as needed until you submit.

How can I check the status of my submitted application?

You can check the status of your application at any time by visiting retire.lacers.org.

Which web browsers are supported by the RAP?

The latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and Safari are supported.

Is the Retirement Application Portal (RAP) different than MyLACERS?

Yes, they are different. MyLACERS allows you to view your information, estimate your benefit, and view and register for events. RAP is solely used for applying for retirement.

I am entering a lot of personal information and documents into the portal, is it safe?

Yes. LACERS has partnered with Box.com to meet the most demanding compliance and privacy requirements. All information and files entered in the portal are encrypted using AES 256-bit encryption.

Are there any forms I will need to download and fill out in the portal?

Yes, throughout the application, some forms will need to be downloaded and signed, such as the W-9 form for tax purposes, Heath Enrollment forms, etc. You will always find these forms available for download in the same section where they will be uploaded.

Can I digitally sign these forms in the portal?

We hope this will be a future function, but at this time certain forms require that you download, sign, and upload after signing.

What if I am missing one of the required documents needed to upload in order to submit my application?

All required documents are required, however if you are in the process of obtaining the document, you may create a Word document and state why you are missing the document and the estimated date in which you will receive it. Upload this Word document in place of the required document in the portal and your assigned counselor will follow up with you.

How do I withdraw my application if I decide not to retire?

If your retirement effective date has passed, you cannot withdraw your application as you are already technically retired. If you have not yet reached your retirement effective date you can withdraw your application in the portal using the withdrawal button. When you decide to retire at a later date you will need to submit a new application.

What if I forgot my username or password?

The username is your personal email address that you used to create your account. Your password can be changed by utilizing the password reset function in the Retirement Application Portal.

What if I no longer have access to my personal email account? 

You will need to create a new account in the Retirement Application Portal.

What if my contact information changes after I submit my application and prior to my retirement effective date? 

Contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328.

Seminars

How do I register for a Seminar?

Login to your MyLACERS Account to view and register. 

Are there recorded seminars available for viewing online?

Yes. Please visit LACERS Official YouTube channel and consider subscribing to be notified each time new videos are posted. 

Time (Sick, Vacation, etc.)

What happens to my SK/VC when I retire? Does LACERS pay me out?

LACERS is not involved with the disbursement of these benefits.

Sick, Vacation, or Holiday time payouts after retirement are paid from the Controller’s Office. Questions regarding these benefits should be directed to your department’s Personnel Section.

Retirees

Stock Market Volatility

How does the condition of the stock market affect my retirement benefit?

Although the benefits are paid based on Member contributions, the City contributions, and LACERS’ investments returns, your retirement benefit is calculated based on a set formula: Retirement Factor X Service Credit X Final Average Compensation. Fluctuations in the stock market do not impact the amount of monthly benefits you receive.

How does the condition of the stock market affect my Larger Annuity account?

Fluctuations in the public investment markets do not impact the payout amount of Larger Annuity monthly benefits you receive.

What happens if LACERS runs out of money?

It would be nearly impossible for LACERS to run out of money since funding of the plan comes from 3 sources: required annual contributions from the City, required bi-weekly contributions from employees, and investment returns. Funding levels of the plan are routinely monitored to ensure LACERS ability to provide retirement benefits over the long term.

Historically, what happened with LACERS investments when the stock market “crashed”?

The value of LACERS portfolio also declined, but less so than the stock market. This is due to the portfolio diversification across different types of investments such as stocks, bonds, and real estate. In other words, LACERS does not put all of its eggs in one basket. Diversification helps ensure that sufficient assets are available to provide retirement benefits over the long term.

Address Change

How do I change my address with LACERS? 
Visit Change of Residence for more information.

Award Letter/Pension Verification

I am applying for a loan/housing and the company is requesting verification of my pension or retirement account. What should I do?

Please visit the Benefit Verification Request page for more information about requesting an Award Letter of your benefit.

Direct Deposit

How do I update my Direct Deposit account information?

Please visit Your Benefit Payment page for the Direct Deposit Authorization form, and for more information.

Early Retirement Incentive Program (ERIP)

What is the total number of ERIP participants?

There are 2,400 ERIP participants.

What is the ERIP Cost Obligation?

The ERIP Cost Obligation is the full cost of ERIP as defined in the Los Angeles Administrative Code section 4.1033 (“ERIP Ordinance”). The ERIP Ordinance states that the ERIP Cost Obligation is the obligation of LACERS Members, and that the City and Unions envisioned ERIP to be cost-neutral to the City.

How was the ERIP Cost Obligation determined?

The preliminary ERIP Cost Obligation was determined by an enrollment actuary engaged by the City, pursuant to requirements of the Los Angeles City Charter section 1168 (b), which specifies that the City Council must be advised in writing of the cost of benefit increases prior to adoption of an ordinance to change the LACERS benefit(s).

The City’s Consulting Actuary provided cost estimates of ERIP based on various scenarios projecting “take” rates of eligible employees. Preliminary projected costs ranged from $250 million to retire 2,229 employees, up to $354 million to retire 2,763. The ERIP Ordinance adopted a preliminary cost of $271 million to retire 2,400 employees.

However, based on the LACERS actuarial valuation report of June 30, 2009 (revised April 22, 2010), the unfunded actuarial accrued liability increased by $355 million when factoring in nearly all ERIP retirees (2,393 of the 2,400 ERIP retirees were finalized at the time of the report).

What is the time period by which the ERIP Cost Obligation should be paid?

For Tier 1 Active Members, according to the ERIP Ordinance, the employee contributions toward the ERIP Cost Obligation begin on July 1, 2011, and end on June 30, 2026 (a 15-year period), or until the ERIP Cost Obligation is fully paid, whichever comes first.

For Retired Members, according to the ERIP Ordinance, an ERIP 1% Reduction shall apply to all ERIP Eligible Filers and Grandfathered Participants receiving ERIP benefits. His or her entire retirement allowance, shall be reduced by 1%.

The ERIP 1% Reduction shall not apply to members of ERIP Group 4.

How much money to date, has been paid by LACERS’ Members toward paying off the ERIP Cost Obligation?

For the quarter ending March 31, 2024, Tier 1 Members have contributed over $287M toward the cost of this liability, estimated at $355M. Employee contributions of 1% of salary go towards the ERIP Cost Obligation, which began on July 1, 2011, and will end on June 30, 2026 (a 15-year period), or until the full actuarial cost of the program is paid, whichever comes first.

Health Plan Changes (Medical and Dental)

When can I make changes to my Medical or Dental plan?

Please visit refer to the Health Benefits Guide (pages 6-8), or the Health Enrollment page for information about Open Enrollment and other qualifying events where you may make changes.

What medical plans are offered in 2024?

The medical plan choices available to you and your dependents are based on where you live, and the age and Medicare status of you and/or your dependents:

For Retirees under age 65:

  • Anthem Blue Cross HMO (CA only)
  • Anthem Blue Cross PPO (US and its territories)
  • Kaiser Permanente HMO (CA only)

For Retirees age 65 or older with Medicare Part B only

  • Anthem Blue Cross HMO (CA only)
  • Anthem Blue Cross PPO (US and its territories)
  • Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)

For Retirees age 65 or older with Medicare Parts A and B

  • Anthem Blue Cross Medicare Preferred (PPO) (US and its territories)
  • Anthem Blue Cross Life & Health Medicare Supplement Plan
  • Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)
  • SCAN Health Plan (CA)
  • UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage HMO (CA, AZ, & NV)

Dual Care Households (at least one subscriber age 65 or older with Medicare Parts A & B and one subscriber under age 65, or age 65 or older with Medicare Part B only):

  • Anthem Blue Cross PPO + Anthem Blue Cross Medicare Preferred (PPO) or Anthem Blue Cross Life & Health Medicare Supplement Plan
  • Kaiser Permanente HMO + Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)
  • Anthem Blue Cross HMO + SCAN Health Plan (CA only)
  • Anthem Blue Cross HMO + UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage HMO (CA only)

For Retirees living outside the U.S. and its territories

  • Anthem Blue Cross PPO Out-of-Country Plan

What are LACERS dental plan choices?

  • Delta Dental PPO
  • DeltaCare USA HMO (CA & parts of NV only)

Which enrollment form do I need if I want to enroll in or change health plans?

  • Non-Medicare Medical/Dental Plans: If you are changing from one non-Medicare medical plan, or dental plan, to another, the LACERS Medical and/or Dental Plan Enrollment Form must be used. You may obtain the necessary forms by visiting the Health Benefits forms webpage, by calling LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and requesting that forms be mailed to you, or by emailing LACERS.Health@lacers.org.
  • Age 65 or older: If you and/or your dependents have Medicare Part B only, or Medicare Parts A & B, senior enrollment forms for the selected plan must also be submitted. Please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and request these forms.

What do I need to do to add a dependent to my existing plan(s)?

When making a change by adding a dependent, submit a LACERS Medical/Dental Plan Family Account Change Form to LACERS as well as a completed Certification of Dependent or Survivor Status for Health Coverage Form. You may obtain these forms here or here.

  • For your spouse/domestic partner, you must submit a copy of your Marriage Certificate or Domestic Partner Affidavit.
  • For your children, you must submit copies of birth certificates.

If your dependent is a Medicare-enrollee, additional forms will be required to enroll in a LACERS medical plan. Please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and request the additional forms.

Can I cover an unmarried dependent child under age 26?

Yes, but if the child is working and their employer provides a medical plan, then the dependent is not eligible for a LACERS plan. It does not matter if your child declines their employer coverage.

When will my plan changes become effective?

New enrollments and changes made during Open Enrollment will become effective January 1, 2024. The cost of your health plan changes and coverage for 2024 will appear on your December 2023 paycheck.

For those experiencing qualifying events, completed forms with applicable supporting documents must be received by the 10th of the month in order for the transaction to be effective the first of the following month.

ID Cards (Medical and Dental)

I haven’t received my new Medical/Dental ID card. Who do I contact?

ID Cards are issued by the insurance carrier. Please refer to the last page/back cover of the Health Benefits Guide for each carrier’s contact phone number.

Anthem Medicare Preferred (PPO) Members

  • Medical plan/prescription drug plan ID card, and
  • Vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID card

SCAN, and 
UnitedHealthcare Members

  • Medical plan ID card, and
  • Vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID card

Anthem HMO with Medicare Part B Only, and
Anthem PPO with Medicare Part B Only

  • Medical plan/vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID card, and
  • Prescription drug plan ID card

Anthem HMO (under 65, non-Medicare), and
Anthem PPO (under 65, non-Medicare)

  • Medical/prescription/vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID card

Kaiser HMO, and
Kaiser Senior Advantage

  • Medical/prescription/vision plan ID card

DeltaCare USA DHMO (CA/NV)

  • Dental plan ID card

Delta Dental PPO

  • No dental plan ID card will be issued, however Members can log on to and print their own from the Delta Dental website: www.deltadentalins.com

Medicare

I will be turning 65. What do I need to do?

Members and dependents who turn 65 will need to contact the Social Security Administration to enroll in Medicare, then complete the appropriate Senior Plan Enrollment form and submit it to LACERS along with a copy of the Medicare card. Please visit the Retirees Medicare Information page for additional details. Additionally, refer to the “Medicare and LACERS Health Benefits” section in the Health Benefits Guide.

    What is Medicare?

    Medicare is federal health insurance for people age 65 and over, and some people under age 65 with certain disabilities or conditions (such as End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) and ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease). There are three parts to Medicare: Part A (hospital insurance), Part B (medical insurance), and Part D (prescription drug coverage). LACERS senior medical plans incorporate Medicare benefits to help reduce healthcare costs and keep plans affordable to Members.

    What is Medicare Part B?

    Medicare Part B is medical insurance that covers doctors’ visits, outpatient services, and some preventive services (e.g., cancer screenings). The Medicare Part B premium is usually published by late November by Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). LACERS will notify Members via a paycheck flyer and on our website.

    What is Medicare Part A?

    Medicare Part A is insurance that helps pay for hospital care, skilled nursing facilities, hospice, and some home healthcare.

    Who is eligible for Medicare Part A?

    Members may qualify for Part A premium-free with 40 quarters (i.e., 10 years of full-time work) of paying Medicare taxes to Social Security while they were working. Members hired on/after April 1, 1986, began paying into Medicare and after 10 years of Service may be eligible to receive Part A at no cost. Members may also be eligible for Medicare Part A premium free (at no cost to you) through a current spouse, an ex-spouse, or a deceased spouse or ex-spouse. Members should contact the Social Security Administration to determine their eligibility. 

    What is Medicare Part D?

    Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage for those in Medicare.

    Should I enroll in Medicare Part D?

    Only enroll through your LACERS plan. Medicare Part D is integrated into all LACERS medical plans. When you enroll in a LACERS Medicare plan, you will be enrolled in Medicare Part D. According to Medicare restrictions, you cannot be enrolled in more than one Medicare Part D prescription drug plan. DO NOT enroll in a Medicare Part D plan separate from LACERS. If you enroll in a Non-LACERS Medicare Part D plan, your LACERS medical plan may be terminated.

    • Exception for Medical Premium Reimbursement Program (MPRP) Enrollees: If you are enrolled in MPRP and your non-LACERS medical plan does not include Medicare Part D, you may enroll in supplemental Medicare Part D insurance.
    • Medicare Part D Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts (IRMAA) It is a separate surcharge from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), based on your income. These must be paid to CMS in order to maintain Medicare coverage (which is required by LACERS) and it is not reimbursable. If you do not pay your Part D IRMAA your medical plan may be terminated. The same is true of Medicare Part B IRMAAs.

    How are LACERS Health Benefits funded? How is enrolling in Medicare helping fund my healthcare?

    LACERS Health Benefits are funded by the City of Los Angeles (employer) contributions, Member (employee) contributions, and investment returns. LACERS’ actuary determines the employer contribution using various factors, including health plan premiums and enrollment.

    When a Member enrolls in Medicare, part of the cost of funding a Member’s healthcare is funded by Medicare. However, LACERS subsidizes portions of the health benefits provided to Members, such as prescription drug coverage, hospitalization (Medicare Part B-only), and ancillary benefits offered in some of LACERS Medicare Advantage Plans.

    How can I find out more about Medicare for enrollment information?

    You may contact Medicare by:

    • Call 1-(800)-MEDICARE (1-800-663-4227), TTY users 1-(877)486-2048
    • Create an account or log into Medicare and start a Live Chat
    • Visit the Medicare.gov website
    • Visit the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services website

    To sign up for Medicare or find out more about Medicare, you can also contact the Social Security Administration (SSA) by:

    What is LACERS Medicare Requirement?

    • The Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC 4.1111 and 4.1126) and related Board Rules require LACERS Members and their eligible dependents to:
      • Enroll in Medicare Part B upon becoming eligible, usually at age 65 (three months before your birthday to avoid a lapse in coverage; check your eligibility with Medicare’s Eligibility Calculator);
      • Enroll in Medicare Part A only if entitled to it premium-free, at no cost;
      • Present LACERS with Proof of Medicare enrollment in Part B or Parts A and B, depending on eligibility (i.e. Social Security Administration Entitlement Letter or their Medicare card);
      • Keep their Medicare Part B premium payments current; and
      • Pay any Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts (IRMAA) assessed on their Medicare Part B and Part D (even if the Medicare enrollee is not paying a Part D premium through enrollment in a LACERS senior medical plan) and/or Medicare Part D Late Enrollment Penalty by Social Security Administration (SSA) or Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)/Medicare, or risk losing their LACERS health coverage.
    • Please Note: Late enrollment or lapses in enrollment may result in permanent Medicare premium penalties to the Member. For more information, please visit Medicare’s Avoid Late Enrollment Penalties webpage.
    • Additionally, Retirees enrolled in both Medicare Parts A and B (with proof of enrollment on file), receiving a subsidy, and enrolled in a LACERS Medicare plan or participate in LACERS Medical Premium Reimbursement Program (MPRP) are reimbursed their basic/standard monthly Medicare Part B basic premium payments.

    Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA)

    What is an Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA)?

    Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA) is a surcharge added to the basic/standard Medicare Part B and D premium rates based on the Medicare enrollee’s income assessed by Social Security. Most LACERS Members are assessed the basic/standard Medicare Part B premium. Medicare Part B IRMAA began in 2007 as a provision of the Medicare Modernization Act. In 2011, IRMAA was expanded under the Affordable Care Act to Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. The Medicare enrollee is responsible for paying assessed Medicare Part B and Part D IRMAAs and LACERS does not reimburse any IRMAA costs.

    The Social Security Administration (SSA) is required by federal regulation to assess Part B and Part D IRMAAs to those who have a higher income. According to SSA, the federal government enacted IRMAAs to high-income enrollees to try to strengthen the financial stability of the Medicare program. Most people do not receive a premium bill from Medicare because their Medicare premium and IRMAAs, if applicable, are deducted automatically from their Social Security Retirement Benefit check.

    If you do not receive a Social Security Retirement Benefit, you will receive a premium bill from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) (also known as Medicare) every quarter. You can pay Medicare by mail, or you can sign up for Medicare Easy Pay. Please contact Medicare at medicare.gov or (800) 633-4227 for any billing questions as LACERS does not handle Medicare bills or payments.

    How Social Security Determines if You Have a Higher Premium

    Social Security uses the most recent federal tax return the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provides. The IRMAA is calculated based on your Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) from your tax return filed two years prior to being assessed IRMAA. For example, to determine your 2024 IRMAA, Social Security will use your tax year 2022 return. Please visit the Social Security website to review the income level chart to understand what you can expect to pay. Social Security will notify you about your Medicare premiums and if you must pay any IRMAAs.

    Contact Social Security if a reconsideration is required or to appeal the decision about your IRMAA. If you amended your tax return and it resulted in a change in your income, Social Security will have to update their record and correct or remove your IRMAA as appropriate. Social Security may make a new decision about your IRMAA if you or your spouse experienced certain life events. According to SSA, you do have the right to appeal Social Security’s decision made about your IRMAA. Contact Social Security at (800) 772-1213 or visit your local Social Security office for more information. You may request an appointment by phone or via the website.

    For more information about Medicare, please visit the Social Security Administration (SSA) website, ssa.gov, or the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) website at medicare.gov. You can talk with a Medicare representative, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at 800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227). For Social Security, please call (800) 772-1213 or your local Social Security office for more information. Other helpful websites include CMS.gov, HealthCare.gov, and Medicaid.gov.

    Is LACERS exploring ways to consider IRMAA reimbursements?

    LACERS has received Member requests to consider exploring IRMAA reimbursements. Such changes to the LACERS Benefit must be adopted by City Council Ordinance, and any consideration of retiree benefit changes must be accompanied by an actuarial study identifying the cost to the City (the Plan Sponsor) of an enhanced benefit. On August 23, 2022, the Board approved and commissioned an actuarial cost study to explore reimbursements. For more details on the LACERS Board report presented on August 23, 2022, please visit: lacers.org/sites/main/files/file-attachments/board_agenda_combined_47.pdf?1660840110

    Additionally, LACERS initiated a survey through the National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) to other public retirement systems to obtain information on their IRMAA reimbursement practices.

    I already paid FICA. Why must I pay additional Medicare fees?

    When the Medicare enrollee’s Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) amount from two years prior (e.g., 2022 IRS tax return for 2024 IRMAA) exceeds a certain threshold, CMS assesses Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), which is a surcharge on top of the basic/standard Medicare Part B and D premium rates.

    When I turned 65, my LACERS Retiree with Medicare A&B Health Plan premium was lower than my subsidy before I turned 65. Where did the rest of my subsidy go? Is LACERS saving/keeping this amount?

    The Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) provides how the medical subsidy is to be calculated and applied based on the Retired Member’s Medicare status (Parts A&B or Part B only). The subsidy of Retired Members with Medicare Parts A&B is based on the single-party monthly premium of their Senior Plan, while the subsidy of Retired Members under 65 or with Medicare Part B is determined by the LACERS’ Board and/or the LAAC. When a Member is Medicare-eligible, LACERS Medicare health benefits are partially funded by Medicare; therefore, the subsidies are different than under-65 Members. Thus, LACERS is not saving because the subsidy is different; rather, the LAAC provides a different subsidy amount for Members over age 65.

    My spouse receives a pension from the Water and Power Employees’ Retirement Plan (WPERP). Why do they reimburse IRMAA, but LACERS does not?

    Retiree health benefits are administered based on each plan’s governing documents. The Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) authorizes LACERS to provide two separate reimbursements, one for the reimbursement of the Member’s Medicare Part B basic/standard premium, and another for the health premium subsidies. WPERP is authorized to provide one reimbursement which can be drawn on for health plans, Part B basic/standard, and IRMAAs up to the available reimbursement bucket.

    Do we have to pay the IRMAA?

    Yes, if you are assessed by the Social Security Administration. In addition, the Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) and LACERS’ Board Rules require Retired Members, Survivors, and their dependents to enroll in and maintain Medicare Part B and Part A (if premium-free) when eligible to enroll in a LACERS medical plan. Your Medicare coverage and your LACERS medical coverage will be terminated if you fail to pay Medicare premiums and any IRMAAs.

    How long does IRMAA last?

    According to SSA, your IRMAA is determined by the income data provided by you to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), usually two years before the IRMAA assessment. Each year, this information is updated, and you will be notified by Social Security of any changes.

    Why can’t LACERS do anything about paying for IRMAA?

    LACERS does not have jurisdiction over the requirements related to IRMAA. Medicare is federal health insurance for people 65 or older and is separate from LACERS.

    Will LACERS reimburse the IRMAA?

    No. The Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) only allows LACERS to reimburse the Medicare Part B basic/standard premium for Retired Members who meet all the requirements. 

    My income is higher only for one year, such as receiving the one-time Separation Incentive Program (SIP) bonus. Why am I subject to the IRMAA?

    According to SSA, your IRMAA is determined by the income data provided by you to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), usually two years before the IRMAA assessment. Each year, this information is updated, and you will be notified by Social Security of any changes. IRMAAs may be assessed based on the Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) reported to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which may include but is not limited to employment earnings, investment income, capital gains on the sale of real estate, and/or gambling winnings in addition to the retirement allowance.

    Does LACERS assess the IRMAA?

    LACERS does not assess the IRMAA. Please contact Medicare or Social Security for more information.at ssa.gov or by calling (800) 772-1213.

    Can I appeal my IRMAA?

    Yes, according to Social Security Administration (SSA) you can request an appeal, also known as a reconsideration, in writing by completing a Request for Reconsideration (SSA-561-U2) available online at ssa.gov/forms or by calling Social Security at (800) 772-1213 to request an appeal form or an appointment with your local Social Security office.

    If I owe a past-due IRMAA, can I pay the amount I owe in installments?

    Yes, according to SSA, you may be able to pay in installments. Contact Social Security at (800) 772-1213 or visit your local Social Security office if you wish to pay in installments. However, please be aware that Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) may not allow you to be enrolled in a Senior/Medicare Plan until the balance due is paid in full. If CMS does not allow your enrollment, then LACERS may not allow your enrollment into one of our medical plans.

    How do I pay Medicare Premiums?

    If you are receiving a Social Security benefit, your Medicare premium and IRMAAs, if applicable, are automatically deducted from your Social Security Retirement Benefit check. You can pay by check, money order, credit card, or debit card by completing the payment coupon at the bottom of your bill and mailing the Medicare payment coupon and payment to Medicare. You can also sign up for Medicare Easy Pay which automatically deducts your premium payments from your savings or checking account each month. The Medicare enrollee is responsible to pay for assessed Medicare Part B and Part D IRMAAs.

    Why aren’t dependents reimbursed the Part B premium and/or IRMAA?

    Los Angeles Administrative Code (LAAC) Secs. 4.1113 authorizes LACERS only to reimburse eligible Retired Members the Medicare Part B basic/standard premium. The reimbursement does not apply toward dependents unless the dependent meets the definition of an Eligible Retiree as provided in LAAC Secs. 4.1113(b) and 4.1128(b).

    Where can I find more information about Medicare?

    For additional information about Medicare visit: medicare.gov/what-medicare-covers/your-medicare-coverage-choices/whats-medicare

    Open Enrollment

    What and When is Open Enrollment?

    Open Enrollment is a one-month period when LACERS retired Members can enroll in a plan, change plans, and/or add dependents to their plan. You may only make these changes during an Open Enrollment unless you experience a qualifying event. For the LACERS 2024 plan year, Open Enrollment is from October 16, 2023, to November 16, 2023.

    What will the Open Enrollment packet consist of, and when will it be mailed to retirees?

    The 2024 Open Enrollment Packet will be mailed out in early October. 

    Members/Eligible Survivors age 65+ (Medicare-enrollee)/Members under age 65 whose dependents have Medicare A&B Members/Eligible Survivors under age 65 (non-Medicare)

    You will receive in the mail:

    • 2024 Open Enrollment Statement
    • 2024 Health Benefits Guide
    • 2024 Open Enrollment Overview

    You will receive in the mail with instructions on how to access the 2024 Health Benefits Guide online*

    • 2024 Open Enrollment Statement
    • 2024 Open Enrollment Overview

    *If you would like a copy of the Health Benefits Guide mailed to you, please email LACERS.Health@lacers.org with subject line “Requesting 2024 Health Benefits Guide” or call LACERS at (800) 779-8328.

    I don’t want to change my medical and dental plans for the upcoming plan year. Do I have to turn in new enrollment applications?

    No. If you wish to keep your current medical and dental plans for you and your covered dependent(s) in the next plan year, no action is required by you. You do not have to turn in new enrollment applications. Please review your current coverage for the new 2024 premiums, subsidies, and deductions.

    Where can I find more information about Open Enrollment and my health plan options?

    You can find digital copies of our Open Enrollment materials, additional information/resources for each LACERS health plan, enrollment forms, Open Enrollment meeting schedule, and more at lacers.org/health-benefits.

    What is an Open Enrollment meeting?

    In preparation for Open Enrollment, LACERS schedules meetings with each health carrier to give our retired Members and eligible Survivors an opportunity to learn more about each plan’s offerings and to get their questions answered. Also, LACERS will go over any changes for the new plan year.

    What medical plans are offered in 2024?

    The medical plan choices available to you and your dependents are based on where you live, and the age and Medicare status of you and/or your dependents:

    For Retirees under age 65:

    • Anthem Blue Cross HMO (CA only)
    • Anthem Blue Cross PPO (US and its territories)
    • Kaiser Permanente HMO (CA only)

    For Retirees age 65 or older with Medicare Part B only

    • Anthem Blue Cross HMO (CA only)
    • Anthem Blue Cross PPO (US and its territories)
    • Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)

    For Retirees age 65 or older with Medicare Parts A and B

    • Anthem Blue Cross Medicare Preferred (PPO) (US and its territories)
    • Anthem Blue Cross Life & Health Medicare Plan (Medicare Supplement) (US and its territories)
    • Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)
    • SCAN Health Plan (CA)
    • UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage HMO (CA, AZ, & NV)

    Dual Care Households (at least one subscriber age 65 or older with Medicare Parts A & B and one subscriber under age 65, or age 65 or older with Medicare Part B only):

    • Anthem Blue Cross PPO + Anthem Blue Cross Medicare Preferred (PPO)
    • Anthem Blue Cross PPO + Anthem Blue Cross Life & Health Medicare Plan (Medicare Supplement)
    • Kaiser Permanente HMO + Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage (CA only)
    • Anthem Blue Cross HMO + SCAN Health Plan (CA only)
    • Anthem Blue Cross HMO + UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage HMO (CA only)

    For Retirees living outside the U.S. and its territories

    • Anthem Blue Cross PPO Out-of-Country Plan

    What are LACERS dental plan choices?

    • Delta Dental PPO
    • DeltaCare USA HMO (CA & parts of NV only)

    Which enrollment form do I need if I want to enroll in or change health plans?

    • Non-Medicare Medical/Dental Plans: If you are changing from one non-Medicare medical plan, or dental plan, to another, the LACERS Medical and/or Dental Plan Enrollment Form must be used. You may obtain the necessary forms by visiting the Forms to Submit for Enrollment webpage, or by calling LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and requesting that forms be mailed to you, or by emailing LACERS.Health@lacers.org.
    • Age 65 or older: If you and/or your dependents have Medicare Part B only, or Medicare Parts A & B,  a senior enrollment form for the selected plan and a Medicare Acknowledgement form must also be submitted by each Medicare enrollee. Please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and request these forms.

    What do I need to do to add a dependent to my existing plan(s)?

    When making a change by adding a dependent, submit a LACERS Medical/Dental Plan Family Account Change Form to LACERS as well as a completed Certification of Dependent or Survivor Status for Health Coverage Form. You may obtain these forms here or here.

    • For your spouse/domestic partner, you must submit a copy of your Marriage Certificate or Domestic Partnership Affidavit.
    • For your children, you must submit copies of birth certificates.
    • For all newly enrolled dependents, a copy of their Social Security card is required.

    If your dependent is a Medicare-enrollee, additional forms will be required to enroll in a LACERS medical plan. Please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328 and request the additional forms.

    Can I cover an unmarried dependent child under age 26?

    Yes, but if the child is working and their employer provides a medical plan, then the dependent is not eligible for a LACERS plan. It does not matter if your child declines their employer coverage.

    When will my plan changes become effective?

    New enrollments and changes made during Open Enrollment will become effective January 1, 2024. The cost of your health plan changes and coverage for 2024 will appear on your December 31, 2023, paycheck.

    For those experiencing qualifying events, completed forms with applicable supporting documents must be received by the 10th of the month in order for the transaction to be effective the first of the following month.

    When will I receive my new health plan I.D. card?

    New cards should be received in mid-January 2024. If you need to seek services prior to receipt of your new card, the provider should be able to confirm your enrollment electronically. Be sure to have your provider/pharmacy update their records with your new card information during your first visit in the new year.

    Anthem Medicare Preferred (PPO) Members

    • Medical plan/prescription drug plan ID card
    • Anthem Blue View Vision ID card

    Anthem Life & Health Plan (Medicare Supplement)

    • Medical and Vision ID card
    • Prescription Drug plan ID card

    SCAN, and 
    UnitedHealthcare Members

    • Medical plan/prescription plan ID card
    • Anthem Blue View Vision ID card

    Anthem HMO with Medicare Part B Only, and
    Anthem PPO with Medicare Part B Only

    • Medical plan/vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID card, and
    • Prescription drug plan ID card will be issued

    Anthem HMO (under 65, non-Medicare), and
    Anthem PPO (under 65, non-Medicare)

    • Medical/prescription/vision plan (Anthem Blue View) ID

    Kaiser HMO, and
    Kaiser Senior Advantage

    • Medical/prescription/vision plan ID card

    DeltaCare USA DHMO (CA/NV)

    • Dental plan ID card will be issued

    Delta Dental PPO

    • No dental plan ID card will be issued, however, Members can log on to and print their own from the Delta Dental website: www.deltadentalins.com

    Is there a pre-existing condition clause in any of the plans, e.g., cancer or multiple sclerosis? Can a Member still be covered? 

    There is no pre-existing condition clause. Retired Members may be covered under a LACERS plan, as long as they enroll during the annual Open Enrollment period (generally Oct. 15 – Nov. 15).

    Are LACERS health plan premiums fixed?

    The premium rates are fixed for one plan year. Premiums are subject to change each January 1. Depending on the zip code of your home address, not all LACERS health plans may be available to you. You may call LACERS to inquire if you reside in a LACERS plan zip code service area.

      Taxes – New Federal Tax Withholding Form W-4P and Form W-4R (For Members and Beneficiaries)

      The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) made changes to Form W-4P, Withholding Certificate for Pension or Annuity Payments. These changes are required to be implemented on or before January 1, 2023. LACERS will incorporate these changes and implement them for the 2023 calendar year, effective by December 13, 2022.

      When should I complete a Form W-4P?

      For periodic payments (monthly pension payments), complete Form W-4P before you begin receiving payments from LACERS. You may also want to complete a new Form W-4P if your financial situation changes. 

      If LACERS does not receive a completed Form, LACERS must withhold a default amount.  Here are the default federal tax withholding rules for periodic payments, eligible rollover distributions and nonperiodic payments.

      • For periodic payments (monthly pension payments), if LACERS does not receive a properly completed Form W-4P, the default federal tax withholding rule would apply:
        • If you begin benefits before January 1, 2023, the default withholding will be calculated as if you are married and claiming three allowances.
        •  If you begin benefits on or after January 1, 2023, the default withholding will be calculated as if you are single with no adjustments.
      •  For eligible rollover distributions, if you do not elect to have the distribution directly rolled over to an eligible retirement plan or IRA, LACERS is required to withhold 20% of the taxable amount (you cannot elect out of this withholding or elect a lesser amount).  If you want more than 20% withheld, you must submit a completed Form W-4R to LACERS.
      •  For nonperiodic distributions (e.g., the portion of a lump sum payment that is a required minimum distribution), if LACERS does not receive a properly completed Form W-4R, LACERS is required to withhold 10% of the taxable amount.

      How do I elect no federal tax withholding?

      On the 2021 Form W-4P, there is a checkbox for you to elect no federal tax withholding from a periodic payment or a nonperiodic payment (you cannot elect out of the mandatory 20% withholding on eligible rollover distributions that are not directly rolled over to an eligible retirement plan or IRA).

      Neither the 2022 Form W-4P nor the 2022 Form W-4R include a checkbox to elect out of federal tax withholding.  In order to elect no federal tax withholding from a periodic payment on the 2022 Form W-4P, you should write “no withholding” in the space under line 4c and leave line 1c blank.  You cannot request only a specific dollar or percentage amount of withholding.  For the 2022 Form W-4R, you can elect no federal tax withholding from a nonperiodic payment by entering “0%” on line 2.  You cannot elect out of the mandatory 20% withholding on eligible rollover distributions. 

      How do I complete the new Form W-4P and Form W-4R?  Can LACERS help me fill out my form?

      In order to be accepted by LACERS, the forms must have, at minimum, the following information completed:

      • Form W-4P: Step 1 (name, address, social security number (SSN), and filing status), and a dated signature in Step 5.  Line 1c may only be left blank if you write “no withholding” on line 4c.
        • Important Note: Steps 2, 3, and 4 may be completed if relevant to your (or your spouse’s if married filing jointly) personal financial situation. Because LACERS cannot provide you with specific tax or financial advice, we recommend that you review the applicable instructions to the forms and seek outside legal, tax, or financial advice if you need assistance in completing the form. You are not required to enter any information in Steps 2, 3, and 4.
      • Form W-4R: Lines 1a and 1b (name, address, and SSN) and a dated signature.
        • Important Note: Determining the amount of federal tax withholding from a nonperiodic payment or eligible rollover distribution will depend on your personal financial situation. Because LACERS cannot provide you with specific tax or financial advice, we recommend that you review the applicable instructions to the forms and seek outside legal, tax, or financial advice if you need assistance in completing the form.

       

      Taxes

      Do I still receive a W-2 Tax form after retirement?

      LACERS Members receive a 1099-R for their retirement payments received for the year.

      I did not receive my Tax form for the year. How can I obtain a copy?

      Log in to your MyLACERS Account to view and print a copy of your 1099-R tax form, or contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328 to request one be mailed to your address on file.

      How do I change my Tax Withholding? 

      Visit this page for more information on changing your tax withholding.

      Do I have to pay taxes on my retirement allowance?

      Your retirement income is taxable. LACERS Members have contributed to the plan on a pre-tax basis since 1986. Any contributions prior to 1986 were taxed, so any portion of your allowance that is based on pre-1986 contributions will not be subject to taxes.

       

      California Proposed Universal Healthcare Plan

      LACERS and the City are aware of the proposed change to how Healthcare is provided in California. The Los Angeles Administration Code is LACERS governing authority. Therefore, Retiree Health Insurance benefits’ compensation changes would have to be passed by Ordinance.

      At this time, LACERS does not have any information regarding how the proposed changes may affect our Members. As information becomes available it will be posted to the LACERS website at www.LACERS.org.

      MyLACERS

      How do I create my MyLACERS Account?

      MyLACERS enrollment requires that a PIN be sent to the Member’s mailing address on file in order to create the account. You can request a new PIN at the following link https://mylacers.lacers.org/RequestPIN.aspx.

      The PIN letter will include step-by-step instructions on creating your account, and should be received within 3-5 business days. Once you receive your PIN, you can proceed to create your MyLACERS Account. If further assistance is required, please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328.

      How can I reset my MyLACERS password or challenge questions?

      For assistance with accessing your MyLACERS Account, please contact LACERS at (800) 779-8328. Once your identity is verified, we can assist you with a password reset or security challenge questions reset.

      I received an email about an Unrecognized Device accessing my Account. What do I do?

      Any time you access your MyLACERS Account from a new device or location, you will be prompted to enter your Challenge Questions to access the account. This will also trigger an email to notify you that your account has been logged in using a new device.

      If you do not recall accessing the account on the date and time you received the email, you may wish to reset your password to secure your account, otherwise you may disregard the email.

      Two-Factor Authentication

      What is two-factor authentication?

      Two-factor authentication is when a user is required to provide a second means of proving they are who they claim to be. The first authentication is the password used to log in along with a username. The second authentication, such as an email or SMS message code, provides an additional layer of security to the account.

      Log in