Under Section 341(j) of the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL), you may receive service credit for your unused, unpaid sick leave at retirement. To be eligible, you must retire directly from public employment or within a year after separating from service.
The additional service credit is determined by dividing your total unused, unpaid sick leave days by 260.
For most members, the maximum number of sick leave days allowable is 165. However, for some members employed by New York State, the maximum is 200 days.
Credit for your unused sick leave at retirement cannot be used to:
- Qualify for vesting. For example, if you need five years of service credit to be vested, and you’re two months short, your sick leave credit can’t be used to reach the five years.
- Qualify for a better retirement benefit calculation. For example, if your pension calculation will improve substantially with 20 years of service credit, but you only have 19½, your sick leave credit can’t be used to reach the 20-year calculation.
- Increase your pension beyond the maximum amount payable under your retirement plan.
- Meet the service credit requirement to retire under a special 20- or 25-year plan.