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WRS Military Service Credit - Frequently Asked Questions

What type of retirement credit does Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA) provide?

Under USERRA, who pays for the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) contributions I missed while on military leave?

What responsibility does my employer have when I assert my right to WRS credit under USERRA?

What responsibilities do I have in connection with my pension rights under USERRA?

What is the difference between USERRA and WRS Continuous Military Service Credit?


What type of retirement credit does USERRA provide?

USERRA provides for WRS service credit and contributions in the amount you would have received (see next question) if you had been continuously employed with your civilian employer.

Under USERRA, who pays for the WRS contributions I missed while on military leave?

You are responsible for making WRS employee required contributions unless you were covered by a collective bargaining agreement with provisions to the contrary. When you return to work with your pre-service employer, you have the choice to make all, some or none of the employee required make-up contributions related to your military leave. Your employer will submit WRS employer required contributions matching the employee required contributions you choose to make up.

USERRA allows for employee required make-up contributions to the WRS to be made beginning with the date of reemployment and ending on the earlier of: three times the period of military service or five years. USERRA specifies that make-up contributions are only allowed while you are employed with your pre-service employer.

For more information about the relationship between Acts 10 and 32 and military service, see Information for Military Service Members Regarding 2011 Wisconsin Acts 10 and 32.

What responsibility does my employer have when I assert my right to WRS credit under USERRA?

When you return from a military leave of absence to the same employer, your employer should provide you with a USERRA Certification Form (ET-4560). That form is required for any length of military leave to ensure that you receive WRS service credit and to provide you with information on making up missed WRS employee required contributions.

What responsibilities do I have in connection with my pension rights under USERRA?

  • First, you must let your employer know that you are asserting your rights under USERRA.
  • Second, if your military leave of absence was longer than 30 days, provide proof of your service to your employer in the form of a DD-214 or other military-issued paperwork. You can get a copy of your military discharge papers (DD-214 or equivalent) from the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs Records Section's website or:
  • Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs Records Section
    P.O. Box 7843
    Madison, WI 53707
    (608) 266-1311 or 1-800-947-8387

  • Third, obtain a USERRA Certification Form (ET-4560) from your employer. Once you have filled out Section A of the form, submit it to your employer. If you qualify for USERRA and your WRS employee required contributions were not paid as a result of a collective bargaining agreement, you have the choice whether to make up none, some or all of the WRS employee required contributions you missed during your military leave of absence. USERRA only allows you to make up these contributions within three times the length of your service, up to a maximum of five years. These contributions must be paid back while employed at your pre-military service employer as pre-tax contributions.

What is the difference between USERRA and WRS Continuous Military Service Credit?

Continuous Military Service Credit is based on state law. It is similar to the federal USERRA law, but contains more restrictions on the types of service that may qualify.

Use the USERRA Certification Form (ET-4560) to apply for continuous military service credit.

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