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Employers

Employer Bulletin

All WRS Employers
Vol. 18, No. 2
January 16, 2001

Termination Dates Required for Receipt of Disability Benefits; Extranet Service and Benefit Inquiry Screen Changed

Termination Dates Required for Receipt of Disability Benefits

The Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) offers disability retirement and long-term disability insurance benefits for WRS covered participants who meet the eligibility requirements. To apply for disability benefits, an employee does not have to be terminated from WRS employment. However, once a Disability Benefit Approval (ET-5804) is issued, an employee must terminate from WRS covered employment in order to receive the disability benefit payments.

Effective immediately, upon receipt of a copy of the Disability Benefit Approval (ET-5804), employers must submit a termination date to the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) so the employee can receive the disability benefit payments. Termination dates may be submitted to ETF either on an Employee Transaction Report (ET-2533) or through electronic media. An Employee Transaction Report (ET-2533) or electronic media must be used when reporting final earnings and hours in addition to the termination date and/or when reporting only a termination date. For information about reporting terminations, refer to the WRS Administration Manual (ET-1127), Chapter 8 - Employee Transaction Reporting; Chapter 12 - Electronic Media Reporting; and Chapter 14 - Termination Rule and Reporting.

Disability annuities that have been approved will be reviewed to identify missing termination dates. ETF will contact employers to submit any missing terminations dates.

The employee cannot be a WRS-participating employee and an annuitant at the same time. If the employee does not terminate from employment covered under WRS and is receiving disability payments, the disability benefit will be terminated and any payments made to the employee must be refunded by the employee to ETF.

For more information, contact the Employer Communication Center at (608) 264-7900.

Changes Made to Extranet Previous Service and Benefit Inquiry Screen

The Extranet Previous Service and Benefit Inquiry Screen was modified recently based on the provisions of 1999 Wisconsin Act 11. Even though the Supreme Court injunction remains in effect, ETF made changes to the database in order to be able to implement the provisions when the injunction is lifted.

Act 11 applies a higher formula factor to creditable service performed before 2000; the original formula factor in effect before Wisconsin Act 11 is applied to creditable service performed after 1999. Therefore, the Creditable Service by employment category that appears at the bottom of the Previous Service and Benefit Inquiry Screen now shows pre-2000 and post-1999 service. Pre-2000 contains creditable service performed before 01/01/2000. Post-1999 contains creditable service performed after 12/31/1999. The amount of Creditable Service by employment category shown in the total service field should be used to determine the total amount of service.

For example, a general employee has 7.50 years of pre-2000 service or 7.50 years of service as of 12/31/1999. The employee accrued 1.00 year of post-1999 service or 1.00 year of service for work performed in 2000. The employee's total creditable service amount as of 12/31/2000 is 8.50 (7.50 + 1.00).

State employers use creditable service information to help determine eligibility for supplemental sick leave credits. Creditable service includes current WRS creditable service, forfeited service purchased, qualifying service purchased, prior WRS creditable service and military service granted under WRS.

NOTE:   There are differences between years of adjusted continuous service or seniority and years of WRS creditable service. Years of adjusted continuous service or seniority with the state relate to the number of years without a break in service that an employee has worked for the state.

Please direct questions about the Previous Service and Benefit Inquiry Screen to the Employer Communication Center at (608) 264-7900.

 

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