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Refund Your Account

If you no longer work for a city that participates in TMRS, you may choose to withdraw your member deposits. Your refund will equal your total member deposits plus earned interest, but not the money that has been contributed by your city. The only way to receive the city matching funds is to retire.

Your status as a vested (see Note 1) or non-vested employee determines your refund options and may affect your decision to request a refund.If you are not sure of your vested status, please contact TMRS or log on to MyTMRS.

You will not receive a refund if you begin work with another TMRS city. The funds and service from your original city will be combined with those of the new city for your total retirement benefit.

If you are vested, you may leave your member deposits with TMRS until you are eligible and choose to retire. Your deposits continue to earn interest and your benefit at retirement will include the city matching funds. If you choose to request a refund, no city matching funds will be included.

If you are not vested, terminate employment, and you do not go to work for another TMRS city, you may leave your member deposits in the System where they will earn interest for up to 60 months. After the 60-month period, your membership terminates. At any time before the end of the 60-month period, you can apply for a refund of your deposits and interest, but no city matching funds are included when you refund, and your membership will terminate.

Exception: If you are a member of another Texas public retirement system (see Note 2) you may be eligible for retirement under the Proportionate Retirement Program. You may combine your time in two or more systems to determine retirement eligibility.

To refund your account, fill out the Refund Application Form.

How to Complete the TMRS Refund Application Form

  1. Fill out the top portion of the form:
    • Full Name
    • SSN (must be legible and match the number on file)
    • Mailing Address
  2. Fill out the Public Safety Employee Certification
    • Answer “Yes” if when you separated from the employing city you provided police protection, firefighting services, or emergency medical services in your position.
    • Answer “No” if, when you separated from the employing city, you did not provide police protection, firefighting services, or emergency medical services in your position.
  3. Fill out the Refund Distribution Section, which asks you to elect a payment method.
    • Check “Direct Payment to Me” if you want the entire refund minus 20% federal withholding paid directly to you.
    • Check “Direct Rollover to IRA/Employer Plan” if you wish to have all or part of your refund issued as a direct rollover. You must submit the Rollover of Refund or PLSD (TMRS-ROLL) form with the Refund Application form.
  4. If you choose to rollover, complete the TMRS-ROLL form:
    • Full Name
    • SSN (must be legible and match the number on file)
    • Mailing Address
    • Rollover Amount
    • Account Description
    • Rollover Information
  5. Signature required – be sure to sign and date the form(s).(See Note 3)
  6. Give the form to your authorized city contact so that he/she can certify the date of the last payroll report containing a deposit for you in the Employer Certification Section.
  7. Send the form to TMRS either by mail or fax.
If you have worked for more than one TMRS city, only the last employing city needs to certify the application.

Refund checks are issued weekly; however, it can take up to 6 to 8 weeks to receive a refund because TMRS must wait until we receive and post the city payroll (the final deposit) before processing the refund. Cities submit monthly payroll reports to TMRS before the 16th day of the month after the month of the employee's final retirement deduction.

Note 1

Vesting is the length-of-service requirement for a TMRS retirement benefit. Depending on the city plan, an employee is vested after obtaining either 5 or 10 years of service.

Note 2

Statewide Retirement Systems

Teacher Retirement System of Texas
Employees Retirement System of Texas
Judicial Retirement System of Texas (Plan 1 or 2)
Texas County & District Retirement System
City of Austin Employees Retirement System
Note 3

Special Tax Notification

Be sure to read the separate page about taxation of the refund and information about direct rollovers before signing the application. The refund is considered taxable income in the year in which it is paid; a member can defer paying income tax by rolling over the funds into an IRA or other eligible plan. The IRS requires TMRS to withhold 20% of a refund unless it is rolled over into a qualified plan. In certain cases, recipients of refund checks may be subject to an additional 10% penalty. See Special Tax Notice Regarding Plan Payments for full information.