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Retire & Rehire

Can a Retiree Work Without Impacting Benefits?

Engrossed Substitute House Bill 1699 limits the number of hours all retired PERS and TRS Plan 1 employees can work without impacting their retirement benefits.

TRS Plan 1 members who retired prior to July 22, 2007 may continue to work up to 1,040* hours per fiscal year (July 1-June 30) without impacting their retirement benefits, provided they waited at least 30 calendar days from their retirement effective date before returning to work. TRS Plan 1 members who retired on or after July 22, 2007 must be separated for at least 45 days if they plan to work up to 1,040* hours in a fiscal year.

PERS Plan 1 members who retired prior to August 1, 2003 and waited at least one calendar month before returning to work in an eligible position may continue to work up to 1,040* hours per calendar year without affecting their benefit. PERS Plan 1 members who retired on or after August 1, 2003 must wait at least 90 calendar days before returning to work in an eligible position, if they plan on working more than 867 hours and up to 1,040* hours in a calendar year without affecting their benefit.

Generally TRS and SERS Plan 2 and Plan 3 retirees who did not retire early using the 2008 Early Retirement Factors (ERF) must wait 30 consecutive calendar days after they retire before returning to work. They can work in an eligible position up to 1,040* hours per calendar year without affecting their retirement benefit.

Refer to the DRS website at DRS.WA.GOV for the publication “Thinking About Working After Retirement?” or call 1-800-547-6657 for more information on additional lifetime hour limitations and 2008 Early Retirement Factors.

* Additional lifetime hour limitations apply to hours between 867 and 1,040.


Gretchen Erhart, Human Resources Leave Specialist

Questions regarding retirement should be directed to Patricia Pama at 253-945-2064 or DRS at 1-800-547-6657.

Procedures & Requirements

The following procedures and requirements must be followed and met in order for a retired individual to be eligible for potential rehire:

All vacant positions must be posted (advertised) in accordance with established Human Resources hiring procedures.
  • The interview team leader will screen all applicants and select applicants to be interviewed by the interview team.  It will not be appropriate to interview only one applicant unless there is only one applicant for the position or unless only one applicant meets the posted minimum qualifications for the position.
  • The interview team will interview all applicants selected for interview.
  • The interview team leader will conduct reference checks using the District’s reference check rubric.
  • The interview team leader will recommend to Human Resources the best qualified applicant for the position based on the qualifications  listed in the posted job announcement, evaluation of applicant interview performance, and the results of reference checks.
  • Human Resources Administration will review all hire recommendations to ensure the appropriate hiring process has been followed, and to ensure that the applicant is qualified and possesses the appropriate licenses, certifications, and endorsements, if applicable, prior to approving the recommendation for hire, including the need to hire a retiree.
  • All such hiring recommendations will be placed on the personnel report to be approved at the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Directors.
  • In order to be rehired the individual must either be currently retired or eligible to retire, as determined by DRS.
  • It is the sole responsibility of the individual to determine their eligibility for retirement and know DRS retire/rehire rules applicable to their retirement plan.
  • All individuals must initially be separated from District employment in accordance with their plans (PERS, TRS, SERS), rules and the effective date of their retirement.
  • At the time of retirement, there can be no contract in force between the retiree and the District, nor any promise of future employment.
  • The retiree can not apply for any jobs during the minimum DRS established initial separation period, nor perform any compensated work for the District.
  • After the minimum separation period has been satisfied, the retiree may apply for open positions that are posted through Human Resources.
  • If selected into a certified position the retiree will be given a limited contract.
  • The retiree will have to re-apply annually if they wish to be reconsidered for a position.  It is the responsibility of the retiree to know the annual and lifetime hours of work limits that may apply to their retirement plan.
  • In order for staff to maintain access to PEBB (Health Care) the retiree must return a form within 60 days indicating waiver of benefits. The waiver enttitles retirees to re-enter COBRA or spousal health care.
  • Any accumulated unused sick leave must be cashed out at retirement.
  • Employees hired under Retire/Rehire rules are eligible to be members of the appropriate bargaining unit. They are entitled to all benefits of the collective bargaining agreement and are responsible for fulfilling all the applicable obligations, excepting those noted below.
  • In Federal Way, retirees will be placed at the appropriate salary step commensurate with their training and experience in accordance with the appropriate collective bargaining agreement.
  • The requirement of a Federal Way District orientation for Federal Way School District retire/rehire individuals will be waived. In all other respects the retiree will be treated contractually like a first-year staff member and shall not be eligible for other longevity or other seniority-driven provisions of the contract.