Benefit Recipients with Benefit Effective Date Prior to April 1, 2018, to Receive 0.5% COLA

At its September meeting, the Board unanimously voted to approve a 0.5% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) increase for eligible retirees and beneficiaries in 2021. Previously, COLAs were suspended from 2018 through 2020.

As a result of HB 49, passed in 2017, the COLA is now based on the year-to-year change in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners (CPI-W), with a range of 0% to 2.5%, unless the Board chooses to adjust the COLA above or below the CPI-W. However, any adjustment can only be enacted if the System’s actuary determines it will not materially impair the fiscal integrity of the system or is necessary to preserve the fiscal integrity of the system.

Benefit recipients whose benefit effective date is on or after April 1, 2018, must wait until the fourth anniversary of their allowance or benefit before receiving a COLA.

Please see our COLA Changes: What You Need to Know handout for more information regarding the changes implemented in 2017, as well as a history of the COLAs and ad hocs issued by SERS.


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