You may be entitled to this benefit if, at the time of filing, you are:
- Permanently incapacitated (physically or mentally) and unable to perform your duties as the natural and proximate result of an accident sustained in service that was not caused by your own willful negligence; and
- In the service upon which your membership is based. If you are discontinued from this service, voluntarily or involuntarily, subsequent to the accident, your application must be filed within two years after your discontinuance from service.
“Accident” has a specific meaning with NYSLRS disability benefits. We determine whether an incident is an “accident” on a case-by-case basis, using court decisions for guidance.
After filing an application for this benefit, you may have to undergo one or more medical examinations. The cost of the medical exam will be paid for by the Retirement System.
Notice of Accident
You must file an application for an accidental disability benefit within one year of the alleged accident. Otherwise, you must have filed a written notice of the accident with:
- NYSLRS within 90 days of the accident; or
- Your employer within 30 days of the date of the accident.
This notice must include the time and place of the accident, the details of what happened, the nature and extent of your injuries and the alleged incapacity.
If approved, the State Police accidental disability retirement benefit is a lifetime pension. The benefit is equal to 75 percent of your FAE, plus an annuity based on any voluntary contributions you may have made and the interest they earned. Mandatory contributions made by Tier 5 and 6 members are not annuity savings contributions, and therefore, Tier 5 and 6 members do not receive annuities based on those contributions.
You must apply for workers’ compensation benefits if you are eligible. Regardless of tier, the accidental disability benefit will be reduced by the total workers’ compensation benefit that you receive or may be eligible to receive.
You or the Superintendent of State Police (or the Superintendent’s designee) can file a disability retirement application, or someone may be authorized to file on your behalf. For example, your attorney, a power of attorney (POA) or a court-appointed guardian, who has been granted authority by the court, may file.
You must select a pension payment option for the payment of your disability benefits. The pension payment option election form must be completed by you (the member who is filing), however your spouse may file this form if you are incompetent.
If you are eligible, applications for the State Police disability, the State Police accidental disability and service retirement benefits may be submitted simultaneously.