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Maine Public Employees Retirement System
P.O. Box 349, Augusta, ME 04332-0349
toll free: (800) 451-9800 ● local: (207) 512-3100

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One Time Election
Recent changes in legislation brought the defined benefit plans MainePERS administers on behalf of employers into compliance with federal IRS law.  Employees with optional MainePERS membership have only one opportunity to participate in MainePERS.  This one-time election applies to all current and future employment in any optional membership position with the same employer.  The System uses employers’ Employer Identification Number/Tax Identification Numbers (EIN/TIN) to determine if the employer is the same employer for purposes of making an election. We consider all employment for an employer using one EIN employment with the same employer.

The change does not apply to employees with mandatory MainePERS membership.  

The new law removes all opportunities for delayed membership, re-joins, and significantly restricts the ability to purchase service associated with those periods.     

What does this mean for employees with optional MainePERS membership?

  • The membership status of someone who was an employee or former employee on July 12, 2010, is the status of that individual for all current and future periods of employment in an optional membership position with the same employer.  
  • After July 12, 2010, new employees make a one-time membership election when hired or first eligible.  This is a one-time, irrevocable choice for all current and future employment in any optional membership position with that employer.
  • Employees who do not join MainePERS at time of hire or first eligibility can only join in an optional membership position later if they change employers.
  • Employees who join MainePERS’ defined benefit plan are not eligible to withdraw their contributions or stop participating unless they terminate employment.

What must Employers do and by when?

In order to ensure that all employees make an informed election, and to prevent future claims against employers, every employee with optional membership must complete a membership application electing to join/not to join MainePERS on their date of hire or date of eligibility. Forward the completed membership application to MainePERS before you submit your next payroll report to MainePERS.

After July 12, 2010, you should not use the “Employee Action Required” form.  A Membership Application is the only valid form for this election.


How MainePERS can help:

  • Staff is available to meet with you, or your employees, about the benefits of joining MainePERS. Contact Retirement Services at 1-800-451-9800 or e-mail Retirement.Services@mainepers.org.
  • See the dedicated One Time Election web pages for employees and employers.  These pages contain more detailed information, including an FAQ section.
  • MainePERS can mail a supply of membership applications at the employer's request.

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Information contained on this Web site is neither a legal reference nor a complete statement of the laws or MainePERS administrative rules. In any conflict between this information and Maine laws or administrative rules, the laws and administrative rules shall prevail.

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