Reemployment after Retirement - Human Resources at Ohio State

Reemployment after Retirement

After retirement, you may desire to return to employment at the university. We realize that retired employees often have specialized knowledge and understanding of the university environment that can support the needs of academic and business units.

If you are considering returning to work at the university following your retirement, it is important that you are familiar with the university’s policy and your retirement system’s rules for reemployed retirees and independent contractors.

Download ToolsDownload Tools

Checklist for Reemployment as a Retiree

OPERS, STRS and University Policy Requirements

OPERS, STRS and university policy require a two-month break of service before reemployment after retirement. If you work at all during the two-month break in service, you will forfeit your retirement benefits, including health insurance, for the month(s) in which you were in violation.

In the event a retiree works during this two-month period and an immediate return was not approved, the university will be responsible for back pay of retirement deductions and penalties, which in turn will be billed back to the employing department.

In rare situations, the university will approve an immediate return to work (Note: STRS requires a one-day break in service). In these instances, the employee forfeits the pension benefit for two months. Faculty requests for approval are submitted to the Office of Academic Affairs (OAA). Staff requests are submitted to the Office of Human Resources (OHR).

Affordable Care Act (ACA) Requirements

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires the university to offer coverage to individuals who worked an average of 30 hours or more a week during a look-back measurement period. Most retirees who return to work within six months of their retirement will be offered state coverage under the Ohio State Faculty and Staff Health Plan, regardless of the number of hours worked in the new position. If the returned retiree is ineligible for medical coverage under the university’s eligibility rules, but is eligible under the ACA, the employee is considered “ACA-eligible” and is offered medical coverage at the full-funding rate. See rates for ACA-eligible employees.

Check your retirement system’s rules on re-employment as a retiree, particularly your eligibility to receive benefits from the retirement system if you return to work. Failure to adhere to these rules can result in loss of pension benefits and access to health insurance from the retirement system.

Health Care Coverage Rules

OPERS and STRS have specific rules regarding access to health care coverage for retirees who return to employment. Reference the below information for a brief summary of the requirements, and check with your retirement system for additional information.

Faculty Re-employed Retiree who Retired from STRS

Non-Medicare Eligible
If in an eligible 75% FTE appointment, STRS medical coverage will only pay as secondary.  You must elect Ohio State or other coverage as primary. If in an appointment of less than 75% FTE, you are not required to elect Ohio State or other coverage as primary.

Medicare Eligible
Not required to take Ohio State or other medical coverage as primary. Medicare will be primary and STRS secondary.

Staff Re-employed Retiree who Retired from OPERS

Non-Medicare Eligible
If eligible for Ohio State medical coverage, OPERS will be secondary. You must elect Ohio State or other coverage as primary. If not eligible for Ohio State medical coverage, but eligible for OPERS health care coverage, OPERS will be primary.

Medicare Eligible
If eligible for Ohio State medical coverage, OPERS will be secondary. You must elect Ohio State or other coverage as primary. If ineligible for Ohio State medical coverage but employed at Ohio State, you can enroll in the OPERS medical plan or enroll in the OPERS HRA but will be ineligible to receive the OPERS monthly deposit into the HRA.

Staff Re-employed Retiree who Retired from ARP

Non-Medicare Eligible
The ARP plan does not offer retiree medical coverage. If eligible, you may elect coverage through Ohio State.

Medicare Eligible
The ARP plan does not offer retiree medical coverage. If eligible, you may elect coverage through Ohio State.

Independent Contractor

OPERS does not provide pension and health care benefits to retirees who return to Ohio State as independent contractors, after having worked at Ohio State as their last public employment. This is regardless of the number of hours or days worked as an Ohio State employee. A retiree who performs services as an independent contractor for the public employer from which they retired forfeits the pension portion of their retirement benefit, and retiree health care coverage is interrupted.

Additional reporting is required by OPERS for all OPERS retirees who worked at Ohio State immediately prior to retiring and now plan to work as an independent contractor. OPERS retirees are advised to contact the Office of Human Resources prior to entering into an independent contractor relationship with Ohio State.

Prior to the appointment date, the retiree, department chair and HRP complete the Request to Rehire Retired Faculty/Staff Member Form. The retiree completes the OPERS or STRS reemployment form and submits to the HRP.

The HRP sends both completed forms to OAA (faculty) or OHR (staff) for approval prior to rehire date.