Chapter 3: LEOFF Service Credit & Contributions

Summary

This section contains information about service credit for members of the Law Enforcement Officers' and Fire Fighters' Retirement System. The information is provided to help you understand how service credit is earned.

Rules that govern service credit are contained in state retirement law. This handbook summarizes those rules in less legalistic terms. It is not a complete description of the law. If there are any conflicts between what is written here and state retirement law, the law will govern.

Service Credit & Contributions

Plan 1 - All periods

A LEOFF Plan 1 member earns one month of service credit for each month in which he or she earns basic salary for 70 or more hours. A Plan 1 member who earns basic salary for less than 70 hours in a month does not earn service credit in that month unless the member is on disability leave or is on suspension for no more than 30 days.

Retirement contributions are due on all basic salary paid to a LEOFF Plan 1 member regardless of the number of hours the member works. Contributions should not be deducted from a disability leave allowance paid to a member.

Plan 2 - September 1, 1991, and After

Since September 1, 1991, a LEOFF Plan 2 member who earns basic salary from one or more employers in a month receives a month or a fraction of a month of service credit.

  • A member earning basic salary for 90 or more hours in a month earns one month of service credit.
  • A member earning basic salary for at least 70 but less than 90 hours in a month earns 1/2 month of service credit.
  • A member earning some basic salary but for less than 70 hours in a month earns 1/4 month of service credit.

Because a LEOFF Plan 2 member earns at least partial service credit in any month in which he or she earns basic salary, an employer should always take contributions on any amount of basic salary earned on or after September 1, 1991.

Note: Membership in LEOFF Plan 2 requires full time, fully compensated employment. For more information, see the section called "LEOFF Membership" in Chapter 2.

Previous rules

January 1, 1987, through August 31, 1991

Before September 1, 1991, a LEOFF Plan 2 member who earned basic salary for 90 or more hours in a month earned one month of service credit. A member who earned basic salary for less than 90 hours in a month did not earn service credit for that month. If a member did not earn service credit for earning periods from January 1987 through August 1991, employer and employee contributions were not due.

Note: For the period from January 1987 through August 1991, a member could consolidate hours of employment with more than one employer to earn service credit. If a member's hours from all LEOFF-covered positions totaled 90 or more in a month, contributions were due on all basic salary earned that month.

Prior to January 1, 1987

Before January 1, 1987, a LEOFF Plan 2 member who earned basic salary for 90 or more hours in a month earned one month of service credit. A member who earned basic salary for less than 90 hours in a month did not earn service credit for that month. Contributions were due on all basic salary earned.

Optional Service Credit

A member of LEOFF Plan 2 may also be eligible to acquire service credit under other circumstances, including an authorized unpaid leave of absence or temporary disability leave. A member who needs more information should contact LEOFF Retirement Services.

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