Reciprocity (Changing Retirement Systems)
Reciprocity allows you to move from one retirement system to another without losing your benefits. CalPERS' reciprocal agreement with other California public retirement systems can allow you to coordinate your benefits between the two systems when you retire.
When you change retirement systems:
- At retirement, you must apply to retire from both systems using the same retirement date, unless you meet retirement eligibility requirements in the other system before meeting our age requirement.
- The highest final compensation from either system can be used to calculate your retirement benefit, but you'll receive separate retirement payments benefits from each system.
- There's no transfer of your retirement contributions or service credit between retirement systems.
- You would be a member of both systems and are subject to the membership, benefits, and rights of each system.
As a result of the Public Employees' Pension Reform Act of 2013 (PEPRA), CalPERS will consider reciprocity when we determine your benefit formula. Refer to your member benefit publication for new formulas in effect due to PEPRA.
For more information, including a list of reciprocal retirement systems that have agreements with CalPERS, read When You Change Retirement Systems (PUB 16) (PDF).
Forms & Publications
- Local Miscellaneous Member Benefits (PUB 8) (PDF)
- Refund Election Application (myCalPERS 1202) (PDF)
- School Member Benefits (PUB 2) (PDF, 1.49 MB)
- State Safety Member Benefits (PUB 7) (PDF)
- When You Change Retirement Systems (PUB 16) (PDF)
Frequently Asked Questions
- How will my service with a reciprocal retirement system be used toward qualifying for retirement?
Service with a reciprocal retirement system, CalSTRS, JRS, JRSII, or LRS can be used toward qualifying for CalPERS retirement. However, each retirement system will calculate your retirement benefits separately and base the calculation upon only the years of service credited in each system. Your salaries and wages earned with another system cannot be used to compute your retirement benefits with the California National Guard. For additional information on reciprocity and reciprocal retirement systems, refer to When You Change Retirement Systems (PUB 16) (PDF).
- What is reciprocity and am I eligible?
As a member of CalPERS, you may be eligible for the benefits of reciprocity. Reciprocity is an agreement among public retirement systems to allow members to move from one public employer to another public employer within a specific time limit without losing some valuable retirement and related benefit rights. Refer to When You Change Retirement Systems (PUB 16) (PDF) for more information.