Helping Idaho Public Employees Build A Secure Retirement

What To Do If I . . .

What To Do If I Quit Work

If you leave employment, for whatever reason, you may withdraw your PERSI contributions and interest or you may leave your contributions in for the following lengths of time:

  • If you have five years of service - you may leave your funds in until retirement. We strongly recommend this, as a retirement benefit can be worth far more than your contributions plus interest.
  • If you have less than five years of service, and your accrued contributions and interest total $1,000 or more, you can leave your money in PERSI indefinitely.
  • If you have less than five years of service, and your accrued contributions and interest total less than $1000, you may leave your money in PERSI for three years. This option could be to your benefit if you think you might return to work for a PERSI employer within three years. After three years of inactivity, PERSI will contact you to initiate a mandatory distribution of your funds.
  • If you worked less than five months/or less than 20 hours per week, your funds should automatically be refunded. However, if you do not receive your funds within three months, you may contact PERSI to initiate a refund.

In all cases, PLEASE KEEP US UPDATED WITH ANY ADDRESS CHANGES FOR FINAL PAYMENTS AND/OR TAX FORMS.

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What To Do If I Change Jobs

If you change PERSI-covered jobs, you don't really need to do anything for PERSI. If you leave employment at one PERSI employer and go immediately to another PERSI employer, your funds remain in PERSI. If you have a break between employers, you may, if you wish, withdraw your PERSI contributions during the break. This is a payment of your contributions plus interest. If you leave a job and return to the same employer within 90 days, you must repay any benefits that had been paid to you. All state agencies are considered one employer so if you quit one state agency and return to work for another state agency within 90 days, you must repay any payment received.

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What To Do If I Want to Retire

About six months prior to your anticipated retirement date, contact PERSI at 1-800-451-8228 for a benefit estimate. If you have already received a benefit estimate (not an annual account statement), and you are going to retire on the date specified in the estimate, contact your local office six weeks prior to retirement to get an application package and to set up an appointment to finalize your paperwork.


If you are a teacher interested in any buy-out or Early Retirement Incentive Programs (ERIPS) available, you will need to contact your local district payroll or human resource office or call the Department of Education at: 208-332-6841.

Your Member Handbook has a lot of information on retirement benefits.

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What To Do If I Have a Death in the Family

If a PERSI member or Contingent Annuitant dies, please contact PERSI at 1-800-451-8228. They will inform you of any available benefits, and what forms or documents (if any) are needed.


If you are the PERSI member and your named beneficiary dies, you may wish to complete a new PERSI Beneficiary Designation form.

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What To Do If I Become Disabled

To be eligible for PERSI Disability Retirement you must be totally and permanently disabled as a result of a physical or mental disease or injury while an active member, and you must have five years of service. Call PERSI at 1-800-451-8228. Your representative will take down your disability information and send you a disability retirement estimate in the mail. The disability application will be sent to PERSI's claims company. Based on medical information, the claims company will determine whether or not you are eligible for disability retirement. There is a 5-6 month waiting period for eligibility based on the last day you worked. Once the approval or denial is determined, you will receive notification by mail regarding the decision. You must submit your application within one (1) year of the date of your last contribution as an active member.

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What To Do If I Get Married

Inform your employer of your name and address change (if necessary) so that they may update their records, which in turn, updates PERSI's records. You may also want to change your PERSI Beneficiary Designation. See our Death Benefits information to see how having an out of date beneficiary may affect your loved ones.

If you are a retiree who was not married at the time you retired, or if your spouse at time of retirement has died and you wish to name your new spouse as Contingent Annuitant, you should contact PERSI within one year of your marriage.

Getting married is a good time to review your PERSI Beneficiary Designation. PERSI's Death Benefits information will provide you with insight on your Base Plan and Choice Plan death benefits and also help you understand the consequences of not keeping your beneficiary designation current.

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What To Do If I Get Divorced

Idaho is a community property state, which means property acquired during a marriage belongs to the "community" of the marriage rather than to one individual as separate property. Under Idaho community property law, PERSI benefits accumulated by a member during marriage are assets of the marriage community. Please contact PERSI at 1-800-451-8228 if you have any questions on a new or existing divorce decree. While we know this may be a difficult time, contacting PERSI as soon as feasible once a divorce is imminent may make this process easier on all involved since a division of PERSI benefits does require a court order.

Also, inform your employer of your name and address change (if necessary) so that they may update their records, which in turn, updates PERSI's records. You may also want to change your PERSI Beneficiary Designation.

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What To Do If I Have or Adopt a Child

You do not need to do anything, but you may wish to complete a new Beneficiary Designation form.

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