Forest Rangers Plan
For PFRS Tier 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6 Members
You may be entitled to a performance of duty disability benefit if you are found permanently disabled as a result of the performance of your duties, regardless of the amount of service you may have.
You may also be eligible if you are permanently disabled by heart disease, but passed a physical examination upon entry to service that did not reveal any evidence of disease or other impairment of the heart (Chapter 437 of the Laws of 2016). If you are applying for disability benefits due to heart disease, your application must be filed while you are in service.
Notice of Occurrence
To be eligible for this benefit, you must file an application for a performance of duty disability retirement benefit within one year following the alleged incident or occurrence. Otherwise, you must have filed a written notice of the incident or occurrence with:
- The Retirement System within 90 days of the incident or occurrence; or
- Your employer within 30 days of the date of the incident or occurrence, if your employer is covered by the Workers’ Compensation Law or if the incident or occurrence took place on or after September 1, 1980.
The written notice must detail the time and place of the incident or occurrence, the particulars thereof, the nature and extent of your injuries, and the alleged incapacity.
If approved, the benefit would be equal to one-half (50 percent) of your FAS plus an annuity based on any annuity savings contributions you have made. The mandatory contributions made by Tier 5 and 6 members are not annuity savings contributions, and Tier 5 and 6 members would not receive an annuity based on those contributions. The performance of duty disability benefit is not reduced by any Workers’ Compensation benefit you may be eligible to receive.
You must also select an option for the payment of your disability benefits.
You, your employer or someone authorized with your power of attorney may file your application for performance of duty disability retirement. The application must be filed while you are still in service or within two years of your discontinuance from service. When filing for this benefit, “in service” is defined as while you are:
- Being paid on the payroll;
- On an authorized medical leave of absence for up to two years (which may be extended for an additional two years); or
- Receiving Workers’ Compensation or other similar employer-funded benefits for up to two years since last being paid on the payroll, as long as you have not resigned or been terminated from employment while receiving those benefits.
If you are eligible, applications for ordinary disability, performance of duty disability, accidental disability, forest ranger disability and regular service retirement benefits may be submitted simultaneously.
1 Updated 12/16