For ERS Tier 3 and 4 Members
(Articles 14 and 15)
Applying for Benefits
To apply for all Retirement System benefits, you must file the appropriate application form with the Office of the State Comptroller in a timely manner. Forms are available from our website, our Call Center or your employer. Specific filing instructions are detailed in each benefit description. If you need help, you can call or write us, or make an appointment to speak with an Information Representative at one of our consultation sites located throughout New York State.
Filing With the Office of the State Comptroller
For a form to be considered as “filed with the Comptroller,” it must be received by our Albany office, one of our consultation sites, or another office of the State Comptroller. Giving your employer the form does not mean that you have “filed with the Comptroller.”
Important Filing Deadlines
Many retirement benefit applications and other documents are required by law to be filed with the Office of the State Comptroller within specific time limits (such as the 15-day filing requirement for your retirement application or the deadline to submit your option election form). As an alternative to visiting our offices to file these time-sensitive documents personally, you can fulfill the filing requirements by submitting the documents to us by mail.
If you are concerned about meeting a filing deadline, you may choose to submit your documents by certified mail or by fax:
- Certified Mail — If you mail a document “Certified Mail — Return Receipt Requested,” we will consider it as having been filed on the same date it was mailed once it is delivered to us by the Post Office.
- Fax — To send the document to us by fax, please include your name, retirement registration number, phone number and the person or department you wish to reach. Although we will consider the form as filed on the date the fax is received, you must still mail us the original document to continue the process and properly complete the filing requirement.
Service retirement documents (Retirement Application, Option Form, proof of your date of birth) can be faxed to our Benefit Calculation and Disbursements Bureau at 518-402-2498.
Disability retirement documents can be faxed to the Disability Services Bureau. For applications in-process or to apply for a disability retirement benefit, documents can be faxed to Disability Processing at 518-474-3091. Documents for approved disability retirement applications (Option Form, proof of your date of birth) can be faxed to Disability Calculations at 518-408-3766.
Member documents (Designation of Beneficiary Forms) can be faxed to our Member and Employer Services Bureau at 518-474-9438.
Filing Multiple Applications
Should you become ill or disabled and unable to perform your duties, depending on the circumstances, you may be eligible to file applications “without prejudice” for disability and regular service retirement benefits simultaneously. “Filed without prejudice” means we will process all filed applications and, if more than one benefit is approved, you will be given the opportunity to choose your pension from the approved benefits.