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Payment calendarCheck mailed October 28Direct deposit November 1

Understand your benefits

CalSTRS provides retirement, disability and survivor benefits for full-time and part-time California public school educators through a hybrid retirement system consisting of its Defined Benefit, Defined Benefit Supplement and Cash Balance Benefit programs, and a voluntary defined contribution plan called CalSTRS Pension2.

Defined Benefit Program benefit structure

CalSTRS Defined Benefit Program is a traditional defined benefit plan that provides retirement, survivor and disability benefits. Your Defined Benefit retirement benefit is based on a formula set by law using your age, service credit and final compensation.

If you were first hired…You are covered under the following benefit structure:Your eligibility for retirement is:
On or before December 31, 2012CalSTRS 2% at 60Age 50 with at least 30 years of service credit or age 55 with five years of service credit—or under special circumstances*
On or after January 1, 2013CalSTRS 2% at 62Age 55 with at least five years of service—or under special circumstances*

*Special circumstances of concurrent retirement with certain other California public retirement systems.

CalSTRS hybrid retirement system 

CalSTRS administers a hybrid system as part of a comprehensive financial security package for members that includes:

Defined Benefit Program – a traditional defined benefit plan

  • Pension based on a formula using age, service and compensation.
  • Member participation is mandatory.

Defined Benefit Supplement Program – a cash balance plan

  • Acts like a 401(k), but similar to defined benefit plans with a minimum earnings guarantee.
  • Member participation is mandatory.
  • Fact Sheet: The Basics of a Cash Balance Plan.

Pension2 – a defined contribution plan

  • Voluntary retirement savings through 403(b) and 457(b) plans.
  • Participation is optional.