Furlough Status and Retirement

Understanding how furlough status affects your retirement

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Will mandatory furloughs affect my retirement benefits?
No. Taking furlough days 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.

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 Personnel Director 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 Assistance Program (EAP) provides help and counseling for a variety of issues. The EAP 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

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