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Retirement Monitor - A monthly newsletter for public sector human resources and payroll specialists
  February 2018

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In this Issue:


Switching Payroll Vendors? Be Sure to Let the Retirement Systems Know ​​​​

When employers transition to new payroll vendors or services, the Retirement Systems Division must be informed of this transition. To implement the change, the Retirement Systems will need:

  • An official notice on letterhead letting us know the new payroll vendor and/or software
  • An estimated “go live” date for the new vendor or software
  • Your employer reporting contact person’s name, title, phone, fax and email

Before your agency’s information can be processed, the Retirement Systems is required to test and verify the file transmission from the new vendor. If the file transmission is not tested, it will lead to the rejection of the employer’s payroll reporting submissions to the Retirement Systems.

Be sure to include your agency 5-digit code in any communication sent to the Retirement Systems. Click here for the report format specifications for all file layouts. For additional information or instructions, please email

rm_horizontal_line-blue.png Re-employment Earnable Allowance Limits Increased for 2018


The Retirement Systems’ Boards of Trustees have increased the amount of compensation a re-employed retiree may earn in 2018. This change is for any retiree who has returned to work with an employer participating in the same retirement system from which the employee retired, but in a position that does not require retirement system membership. The increase, which became effective January 1, 2018, is equivalent to the 0.5 percent increase in the national Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the period from January 1 to December 31, 2017.

As provided under North Carolina law, the retiree’s retirement benefit will be suspended on the first day of the month after the month the retiree exceeds the limit for the remainder of the calendar year. For example, if the retiree exceeds the limit in July 2018, the retiree’s benefit will be suspended from August 1 through December 31, 2018.

For calendar year 2018, the earnable allowance limit is the greater of:

  • 50 percent of the member’s compensation during the 12 months of service before retirement, excluding any termination payments, as increased by the equivalent CPI increase above the 2017 limit, or
  • $32,940

These earnings restrictions apply for the 12 months immediately following the effective date of retirement and for each calendar year following the year of retirement.

Health coverage provided to retirees of the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System through the State Health Plan will also be suspended if the retiree’s retirement benefit is suspended. If the member’s benefit is suspended and later re-instated, his or her State Health Plan retiree group coverage will not be re-instated retroactively. As a result, the member may experience a lapse in health coverage, which means he or she may not have health coverage for a month or more.


2015 Annual Benefits Statements Available Until March 29, 2018​ 

The North Carolina Total Retirement Systems is preparing 2017 myNCRetirement Statements (formerly known as Annual Benefits Statements (ABS)) for active employees who contributed to their retirement system account as of December 31, 2017.

In preparation for the new statements, 2015 statements will be permanently removed from ORBIT on Thursday, March 29, 2018. Please remind your employees to view, download and/or print their 2015 ABS if they have not yet done so, as copies of past statements are not retained by the North Carolina Retirement Systems Division. Any assistance you can provide to your employees who do not have access to a computer during the course of their workday, such as a centrally-located computer work station or kiosk, is greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your continued support in the monthly reporting process. Your data is critical to an accurate myNCRetirement Statement for your employees. The 2017 ABS will be posted in ORBIT during May. Resources, including an animation guide highlighting the ABS features, a detailed Users’ Guide, and FAQs, will be posted to the Department website at