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Employers

Employer Bulletin

All WRS Employers
Vol. 19, No. 7
April 10, 2002

Deliver Employee Annual Statement of Benefits and Return WRS Distribution Report

A personalized Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) annual Statement of Benefits (dated January 1, 2002) is enclosed for active employees who have WRS contribution balances as of December 31, 2001. Please distribute the statements according to the instructions and guidelines provided below.

The Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) must verify that all participants receive a WRS Statement of Benefits. Once you distribute the Statements to your employees, complete the Distribution Report included with this Bulletin and return it to ETF by May 31, 2002.

Statements Do Not Reflect the 2001 Variable Contributions

Statements do not reflect the 2001 variable contributions for participants who elected to participate in the variable trust effective in 2001. Instead, variable contributions for 2001 are included in the fixed account balances. The statements include a brief generic explanation that the variable contributions are temporarily included in the fixed balances.

Shortly before the January 1, 2002 annual statements were distributed, ETF sent a letter to all participants who elected variable participation effective in 2001. The letters included the following information:

  • The total January 1, 2002, account balance was not affected by the fact that the statement does not reflect the 2001 variable participation. Since 2001 contributions are not credited with interest until the end of 2002, the fact that the 2001 "variable" contribution is reflected in the fixed balance instead of a variable balance does not change the total January 1 account balance.
  • When accounts are updated to reflect the variable elections effective in 2001, the system will also move 50% of the 2001 contributions from fixed to variable. This will assure that variable interest for 2002 will be properly credited to the 2001 variable contributions.

Instructions and Guidelines for Statement Distribution

Employers are responsible for distributing Statements of Benefits to their active WRS covered employees. The following are guidelines to remember when distributing statements:

  1. Do not forward statements to employees via U.S. mail in the envelopes provided. If mailing addresses are insufficient or incorrect, the statements will be returned to ETF marked undeliverable.
  2. Be sure to distribute statements to employees on leave of absence or layoff.
  3. If a statement is included for an employee who recently terminated or for which a termination report has not yet been sent to ETF:
    • Return the Statement to ETF along with the Distribution Report (see last page).
    • Immediately submit an Employee Transaction Report (ET-2533) including the termination data and employee's last known address, if you have not already done so. ETF will then forward the statement to the employee.
  4. Notify employees who work for more than one WRS employer that their statements are sent to the employer with the employee's most recent WRS-begin date. Verify this with your employee before contacting ETF.
  5. You will not receive a statement for employees who:
    • Terminated employment if you reported the termination to ETF on an Employee Transaction Report (ET-2533).
    • Had no WRS contributions reported as of December 31, 2001.
    • Had no balance remaining in their WRS accounts on December 31, 2001.
  6. Complete and return the Distribution Report form to ETF by May 31, 2002.

NOTE: Encourage your employees to carefully read the supporting material enclosed with their Statement of Benefits. Most of their questions can be answered by reading this information. Be aware that employees may contact you for clarification of their WRS service, earnings and/or employment category that you have reported to ETF.

ETF continually seeks to improve the annual Statement of Benefits format and we welcome your feedback. Please address all comments to:

Dale Ferron
Division of Employer Services
P.O. Box 7931
Madison WI 53707-7931

You may also contact him via e-mail: dale.ferron@etf.state.wi.us.

For questions regarding the distribution of annual Statements of Benefits, contact Dale Ferron at (608) 266-0728 or e-mail him at dale.ferron@etf.state.wi.us. For all other questions, please call the Employer Communication Center at (608) 264-7900.

Don't forget to complete and return the Distribution Report form by May 31, 2002!

Link to: Distribution Report Form

 

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