September 2011
August 31, 2011

ERS: Retirement Online a helpful service

Source: NYSUT United

Earlier this year, we briefly told you about a free, online service we offer where you can get up-to-date information about your personal retirement account. Called Retirement Online, this service enables you to check your contribution balance, beneficiary designations, loan balances, estimated service credit and other important retirement membership information from a secure area of our website.

For example, let's say that you're a Tier 4 member who has borrowed against your contributions and are now repaying the loan. Retirement Online is a quick and easy way to confirm that we have received a payment you recently sent to us.

There are some customer service tasks which will always require you to contact one of our call center agents directly by telephone. But if you want instant access to your own retirement information, you should consider enrolling in Retirement Online.

Q: How do I enroll in Retirement Online?

A: All you need to do is visit our website at www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/portal.htm and click on "Enroll/Login" to begin the enrollment process. You will be prompted to supply us with your Social Security number, birth date (which will be verified against our own records) and email address.

During enrollment, you will create your own user ID. Once enrolled, we will mail you a password. Since we mail the password to the address we have on file for you, it is very important that we have your correct address. (A Change of Address form is included in your Member Annual Statement, which you should have received over the summer; it is also available at http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/forms/rs5512.pdf).

The first time you log onto Retirement Online, you will enter the password we mailed you and the user ID you have created. Once you do this, you will next be asked to change that password to one of your own choosing. You will then use this new password along with your user ID for all future logins. (For users who encounter any difficulties selecting a new password, a new tool to help you enroll was expected to be up and running this past July.)

Q: Is it safe to enter my personal information when I enroll in Retirement Online?

A: Yes. Because the information you enter into the program is encrypted, it cannot be viewed by anyone else on the Web.

Q: Is Retirement Online just for Employees' Retirement System members?

A: No. Pensioners can also check the deductions to their latest monthly payment, year-to-date payment totals and other retirement information.

Q: How can I get help if I need it?

A: Please email us from our website, www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/contact_us, or contact our Call Center toll-free at 866-805-0990 or 518-474-7736 in the Albany, New York area.