Changing Jobs? Your CalSTRS and CalPERS Options

There are some things to keep in mind when you are changing employers.

When you begin your employment, you’ll be covered by one of the following retirement plans: CalSTRS or CalPERS.

If you change employment from a job covered by one system to employment covered by the other, you may be able to choose whether to remain with the previous system or switch to the new one. If you do decide to change, know that the rules can be complex, and your choice can have a significant impact on your retirement benefits. Before you make a change, take some time to understand your options.  

What if I Stay with My Current Plan?

If your new position is covered under a new retirement system, you must submit a Retirement System Election form to your employer within 60 days of your hire date if you wish to stay with your current retirement system.

Can I belong to CalSTRS and CalPERS?

You can keep your account with the old retirement system and have your new job under the new retirement system. In this case, you can retire from both systems at the same time for a concurrent retirement. There are restrictions on this option, so be sure to contact CalSTRS or CalPERS for more information.

What if I do nothing?

You’ll automatically become a member of the retirement system that covers your new position.

Your Retirement Benefit

Both CalSTRS and CalPERS calculate your retirement benefit based on your service credit (years of service) in the system, your retirement age and your final compensation. Each retirement system applies a formula to determine the final benefit.

For more information or to estimate your retirement benefit:

CalSTRS Member Services:  800-228-5453 or

CalPERS Customer Contact Center: 888-225-7377 or