Glossary

Glossary of Terms

Overview

Active Member

Any Member of LACERS who is an employee of the City of Los Angeles, including employees on leave without pay status. 

Beneficiary

Any person or legal entity entitled to receive a benefit provided by LACERS.

City Service

Those periods during which you were a Member of LACERS and 1) received compensation from the City as an employee or 2) received temporary disability Workers’ Compensation benefits, and also paid contributions to the LACERS.

Continuance Benefit

A lifetime monthly survivor benefit provided to a qualified beneficiary as the result of the death of a Retired Member.

A lifetime monthly benefit provided to a qualified beneficiary as the result of the death of a Retired Member.

Continuous City Service

A sum of your uninterrupted City Service (with no break in service of more than 3 years). The service may be a combination of City employment service and governmental service purchased.

Early Reduction Factor

A reduction that is applied in the process of calculating your retirement allowance when you meet the criteria for a Early Retirement. The reduction factor is based on your age and the chart can be found in the Summary Plan Description for your Tier.

Full Reciprocity

Will only apply if you have reciprocal rights with another State reciprocal system established for a switch in employment between the two systems resulting in reciprocity service at LACERS beginning on or after July 14, 1997. Only Full Reciprocity service may be used for eligibility.

Health Service Credit

Accounts for the hours you have worked as an Active LACERS Member to qualify for health benefits. A minimum of 10 years of Service is required to become eligible for a health subsidy as a Retired Member. 

Health Benefits

Health Subsidy

A monthly dollar credit applied to the cost of a Retired Member’s medical plan premium. The premium is the monthly cost of insurance coverage for a LACERS Retired Member and any dependents.

Health Benefits 

Limited Pension Benefit

A monthly benefit provided to your spouse/domestic partner that is equal to one-half of your average monthly salary in the year before your death. Your spouse/domestic partner may receive up to a maximum of 12 payments dependent on the number of whole years you worked. If you leave no such survivor, this benefit will be paid to your minor children or, if none, to your dependent parent(s).

Membership Date

The original date when you first became a Member of LACERS. This may also be the first date you became a member of the Water & Power Employees Retirement Plan if the funds associated with the membership are on deposit at LACERS. 

Refund of Contributions

A refund of your contributions and interest that is on deposit with LACERS. To request a refund, complete the Distribution Election Form.

Retirement Allowance

Your lifetime monthly monetary benefit that is determined by your Final Compensation multiplied by your Service Credit multiplied by the Retirement Factor. An additional Early Reduction Factor may also be applied if selecting and Early Retirement.

Senior Plan (Health Benefits)

A medical insurance plan that coordinates with Medicare

Service Credit

The component of your benefit calculation based on your hours worked. Full-time employees receive 0.03835 years of Service Credit per pay period. The Service Credit for part-time employees will be prorated for each pay period based on the actual hours worked divided by 80 hours

Survivorship - Disability Retirement

This option allows your eligible spouse/domestic partner to receive a monthly benefit for his/her lifetime generally in the amount of one-third of your final compensation regardless of your eligibility to retire. Your spouse/domestic partner must be eligible to receive all of your contributions to be eligible for this benefit.

Survivorship - Service Retirement

Member Eligible to Retire at Time of Death

If you are eligible for a Service Retirement on the date of your death, this option allows your spouse/domestic partner to receive a monthly lifetime benefit based on your retirement eligibility. If you do not have an eligible Spouse/Domestic Partner, it may be paid to your minor children or, if none, to your dependent parent(s), provided they are eligible to receive all of your contributions.

Member Not Eligible to Retire at Time of Death

If you are not eligible for a Service Retirement on the date of your death, your spouse/domestic partner may elect to wait and receive the monthly lifetime benefit you would have been eligible for a Service Retirement. Your survivor would not begin receiving this monthly benefit until your earliest retirement date, but would then receive this allowance for the remainder of his/her lifetime. Your spouse/domestic partner must be eligible to receive all of your contributions to be eligible for this benefit.

Restrictions

With either of the above mentioned  options, your surviving spouse/domestic partner, minor children, and/or dependent parent(s) will not be entitled to a Limited Pension or to benefits under LACERS Family Death Benefit Plan.

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