How Do I…
Apply for Occupational Disability Retirement?
If you become disabled so that you are no longer able to perform your job, and the disability is likely to be permanent, you may be eligible for Occupational Disability benefits from TMRS. There is no minimal length of service or age required to be eligible.
An Occupational Disability benefit is calculated like a Service Retirement benefit, based on your deposits and interest, your city’s matching funds, and other credits, and is payable to you beginning on the last day of the month following your effective retirement date, assuming your disability is approved by the TMRS Medical Board.
For an Occupational Disability Retirement, the cause of the disability does not need to be job-related. However, the TMRS Medical Board must find that:
- You are physically or mentally disabled for further performance of the duties of your particular occupation;
- Your disability is likely to be permanent; and
- You should be retired.
If you believe you meet these criteria, do the following:
- Determine your retirement date. It must be the last day of a calendar month and cannot precede your termination date from all TMRS cities. Your retirement application must be received by TMRS no later than your retirement date and not earlier than 90 days prior to your retirement date.
- Request an Occupational Disability Retirement estimate. The retirement estimate provides TMRS members with estimated monthly annuity payments for each retirement plan. Please call TMRS Member Services (800-924-8677) for an occupational disability retirement estimate.
- Request an Occupational Disability Retirement Packet (TMRS-ODRP).
To initiate the process, please contact your City Correspondent and complete an Application for Occupational Disability Retirement. The city will complete the City Statement for Occupational Disability. A copy of your official job description should be attached to the completed form. The completed/certified form and attached job description should then be used by the member and the physician(s) to complete the Member’s Statement for Occupational Disability and the Physician’s Statement for Occupational Disability. Once all forms are completed and certified, forward the forms and job description to TMRS for review by the TMRS Medical Board.
Note: All three statements and the job description are required before the file can be presented to the TMRS Medical Board for review.
If the application for Occupational Disability Retirement is approved by the TMRS Medical Board, TMRS will also require the following forms before issuing the first payment:
- Selection of Retirement Plan
- Selection of Partial Lump Sum Distribution (only if eligible for service retirement and member wishes to receive this distribution)
- Proof of your birth
- Proof of birth for beneficiary (only if selecting lifetime payment plan for beneficiary)
- Name Certifications (if applicable)
- Direct Deposit Authorization
- IRS form W-4P (if not received TMRS is required to withhold based on an election of Married with 3 allowances.)
If the Medical Board approves your Occupational Disability Retirement, you will receive a monthly benefit. While receiving benefits, you may pursue other employment, but your monthly benefit may be affected if your retirement benefit plus your employment income exceed the salary you received when you were an active TMRS member. TMRS may request that you provide information regarding any earned income you may have each year until you reach age 60.
If you are eligible for service retirement and you become disabled, you may wish to consider applying for service retirement rather than Occupational Disability. The benefits at TMRS are equal, and service retirement places no restriction on your earnings.
If you fax a form, do not mail a separate copy. We only need one copy of each form, either faxed or mailed.
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