DRS email 14-013 Teachers Pension Advisory Services Mailing Incorrect, Misleading Information

  • Date: September 22, 2014
  • E-mail 14-013
  • Applies to: School District Employers
  • DRS Email 14-013, TRS Plan 3 Rate Window Reminder
  • Subject: ALERT Regarding Misleading, Incorrect Mailing from the Teachers Pension Advisory Services
The Department of Retirement Systems has learned of a misleading and inaccurate mailing that a private company – TPAS (Teachers Pension Advisory Services) – has distributed to some school districts.

The mailing contains envelopes addressed to individual teachers, at the school district’s address. Each individual letter has a metered stamp reading, “PRSRT STD US POSTAGE PAID PERMIT 196 KATY, TX.” Apparently, TPAS assumes that school districts will distribute the individual letters to the employees addressed on the envelope.

Some of the information in the letter is inaccurate. DRS has not “approved” the TPA 403(b) plans or products. The letter is also misleading in that it gives the impression that it is sent in collaboration with DRS. And it asks for personal information from each employee. Examples include: date of birth, address, and email.

Beginning immediately, DRS requests that school districts NOT distribute the letters to individual employees. This will allow us to look for further guidance concerning this matter. If you have already distributed the letter to your employees, DRS requests that you follow up to explain that the letter did not come from DRS and that the TPAS plans have not been “approved” or endorsed by DRS.

Should you have questions, please reply to this message or call Employer Support Services at 360-664-7200, option 2, or 800-547-6657, option 6, option 2.

RCW 41.50.140 provides that employers participating in DRS retirement systems shall cooperate with DRS in the administration of the retirement systems.  Consistent with this statutory provision, DRS requests that you, as a DRS employer, not distribute this letter to your employees.