Retirement Eligibility

Your eligibility to retire is determined by several factors including your age, your service date, your appointment, and the number of years you have worked for the university. “Retirement” is defined as a voluntary termination from the university based on meeting age and eligible service requirements. In addition to other eligibility, there is also a 10-year minimum service requirement to retire with benefits (including health, prescription drug, dental, vision, legal, and life insurance coverage if eligible).

For more information on eligibility to retire and accrual of service to retire, see SPG 201.83

Point System

Retirement eligibility is determined by a point system. The number of points you have at a given time is equal to your age plus your years of continuous eligible service at the university.

For 2019 and 2020, 79 points are required to be eligible for retirement. For example, if Robert is age 65 and has worked at U-M for 14 continuous years, he has 79 points and is eligible to retire (65 + 14 = 79).

In 2021, 80 points will be required to retire.

  • Retirement in 2019 or 2020: 79 points

  • Retirement on or after January 1, 2021: 80 points

Changes to the university contribution to retiree health benefits will be phased in over this same period. Understanding these changes will help you make the best decision about when to retire and how to budget for health care.

If you are eligible and thinking of retiring before 2021 due to the change in health care contributions, carefully weigh any financial trade-offs involved. As a courtesy reminder, the University of Michigan Benefits Office sent communications to faculty and staff who may be eligible to retire. Review the letter sent to eligible employees.

If you belong to a union or collective bargaining unit, check with the terms of your collective bargaining agreement to determine if the point system for retirement applies to you.

Retiring Before Age 62

Individuals who retire before age 62 and have a service date on or after July 1, 1988 pay the full cost for benefits coverage until they reach age 62. They are not eligible for any university contribution toward their health plan or other benefits before age 62. Individuals with a service date before July 1, 1988 receive the university contribution to benefits upon retirement regardless of their age at retirement.

Your Estimated Retirement Date

The Estimated Retirement Eligibility Date program on Wolverine Access calculates your estimated retirement date. Log in and select Employee Self-Service > Benefits > Est. Retirement Eligibility Dt.

The program will display the earliest month and year during which you will be eligible to retire from the university with benefits. You may see several years listed and what the university contribution toward benefits will be for you and any dependents based on which year you choose to retire.

If Wolverine Access displays a message that an estimated retirement eligibility date cannot be calculated for you, your service history data indicates an occurrence of one or more the following:

  • You have not been continuously employed as a regular or supplemental faculty or staff member at 50% or greater effort.

  • You have had an appointment as one or more of the following titles which do not accrue years of service to retire with benefits: Regular, Supplemental, Adjunct, or LEO I with effort below 50%, House Officer, Research Fellow, Professional Specialist, Graduate Student, or temporary hourly staff.

  • You did not return to an appointment as a regular or supplemental faculty or staff member with a 50% or greater appointment following a period of non-appointment, approved leaves of absence without salary, or layoff (reduction-in-force).

Please be aware that the retirement date shown in Wolverine Access is only an estimate based on available information about your employment. Your individual circumstances, including different types of appointments or changes over time between benefits-eligible and non-eligible appointments, may require manual review of your employment history by a retirement specialist in the Shared Services Center. Call the SSC Contact Center at (734) 615-2000 if you have questions about your estimated retirement eligibility date.