Retiree Benefits: What Happens When I Retire?

Eligibility

Retiree medical, prescription, vision, dental, group life insurance, and voluntary benefits (if you were enrolled in voluntary benefits as an active employee) are available to individuals who:

  • Are a participant in the Florida Retirement System (FRS) Pension Plan and are leaving County service to receive regular, early or disability retirement benefits; or,
  • Are a participant in the FRS Investment Plan, are leaving County service and meet either the age or service requirements (see below) to qualify for normal retirement.

Age and Service Requirements

You meet the age or service requirements for normal retirement if any of the following conditions apply to you:

Hired Before July 1, 2011

  • Age 62 and vested
  • 30 years of service
  • Age 59 1/2 and six years of creditable service

Hired After July 1, 2011

  • Age 65 and vested
  • 33 years of service
  • Age 59 1/2 and eight years of creditable service

Enrollment

To schedule your retirement meeting to enroll in coverage, contact Employee Benefits at (727) 464-3367 and select option 1.

Enrollment forms must be received by Employee Benefits within 31 days of your leaving active employment. This is your only opportunity to enroll in these benefit plans.

Active employee benefits end on the last day of the month in which you separate employment if you elect retiree coverage. Otherwise, coverage ends at the end of the pay period in which your employment separation occurs. Retiree benefits will commence on the first day of the following month.

Retiree Medical, Prescription and Vision Coverage

Non-Medicare Eligible Retirees

If neither you nor a covered family member are Medicare eligible, then you may enroll in either the Choice Fund Open Access Plus HSA plan or the Open Access Plus plan. These are the same plans available to active employees. If you enroll in the HSA plan, then Pinellas County will continue to fund your HSA Bank Health Savings Account at the beginning of each calendar year.

Pinellas County provides an insurance subsidy for individuals hired prior to Jan. 1, 2011, and who have 10-plus years of continuous service with the County. The subsidy increases with longevity. Please see the Medical Plan Rates for Non-Medicare Eligible Retirees.

Medicare Eligible Retirees

When at least one covered family member becomes eligible for Medicare, the Medicare eligible member may enroll in the Medicare Advantage Preferred Provider Organization (MAPPO) plan. Any non-Medicare eligible family member will be enrolled in the Open Access Plus (OAP) medical plan. In order to enroll in the MAPPO plan, you must have both Medicare A and B coverage.

Medicare enrollment is only required when you separate from active service with Pinellas County. It is not required while you are an active employee. It is the responsibility of you and your dependents to enroll in and pay the Social Security Administration for Medicare A and B. You must ensure Medicare coverage is effective when your MAPPO coverage begins or at the time you or your dependent becomes Medicare-eligible. Failure to enroll when you become eligible puts you at risk for a delay in coverage, late application penalty or loss of County coverage.

We recommend that you do not enroll in a stand-alone Medicare Part D plan. If you do, you will lose the Medicare Advantage plan coverage and cannot re-enroll.

The MAPPO plan, administered by Aetna, is specifically designed for Pinellas County Government retirees and their dependents. It offers medical, prescription drug and behavioral/mental health benefits. Vision benefits are provided by EyeMed. See Medical Plan Rates for Medicare-Eligible Retirees.

Health Savings Account (HSA)

If you have an HSA, then you may use your funds to pay for eligible medical and dental expenses, regardless of which plan you are enrolled in. Eligible expenses include deductibles, co-insurance, copays and the cost of eyeglasses, among others. You are no longer eligible to receive or make contributions to your account if you are not enrolled in a high-deductible plan such as the Choice Fund Open Access Plus HSA.

Retiree Dental Coverage

You may enroll in the Basic PPO, PPO with Orthodontia, or HMO dental plan, which are all administered by Cigna and provide the same coverage available to active employees. These plans may have separate networks, so please confirm your dentist’s participation prior to selecting a plan. The dental HMO is only available to retirees with a Florida address. The retiree pays the full cost of the premium for the selected coverage level. Learn more and view monthly premiums.

Retiree Life Insurance

Basic Insurance

You may elect to continue the group term life insurance plan that has been paid by Pinellas County by paying the monthly premium for the coverage. The maximum benefit you can choose is equal to your coverage as an active employee (your annualized salary rounded up to the next thousand). If you are over age 65, an age reduction will apply. The maximum coverage is $100,000. The minimum benefit amount is $5,000. Learn more and view monthly premiums.

Supplemental/Dependent Life Insurance

If you have supplemental and/or dependent life insurance when you retire, then you will receive information from Securian Financial Group about continuing the coverage.

Wrap Universal Life Insurance

You may continue your current coverage by converting to an individual contract. Contact TransAmerica Wrap Plan Customer Service at (888) 763-7474 for assistance.

Voluntary Benefits

Voluntary benefits coverage ends on the last day of the pay period in which your separation occurs. This includes Aflac Supplemental Medical, AIP Identity Protection, and ARAG Legal. If desired, you can take your benefits with you at the group rate you are paying when you leave (referred to as “porting your plan”). Since you will no longer be eligible for paycheck deductions, the vendors will bill you directly. AIP and ARAG will email portability options to the email address on file for you and mail a packet to your home address as well. Before you leave the County, please make sure your personal email address is included in OPUS if you would like to receive information by email. You have 90 days from the date your coverage ends to port your Identity Protection or Legal plans. For Aflac plans, complete the Continuation of Coverage Form and send payment to Aflac within 31 days of your last day. For questions, please contact your voluntary benefits provider:

  • Aflac for Supplemental Medical: (800) 433-3036
  • Allstate (AIP) for Identity Protection: (800) 789-2720
  • ARAG for Legal: (800) 247-4184

Benefits Not Eligible for Continuation

Deferred Compensation (457)

When you leave Pinellas County employment, you are no longer eligible to make contributions to your deferred contribution account. Based on your current balance, you can either take a distribution, roll your funds into another qualified plan or leave the funds in your account. Contact your deferred compensation provider to discuss your options:

  • Empower Retirement: (800) 528-9009
  • MissionSquare Retirement: (866) 620-6070
  • Nationwide: (877) 677-3678
  • Valic (AIG): (813) 269-3362

Flexible Spending Account (FSA)

Your participation in the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) ends on the last day of the pay period in which your separation occurs. You have 90 days from the date your coverage ends to submit claims incurred while you were a plan participant. Any funds remaining in your account after the 90-day period ends will be forfeited. You may be eligible to continue coverage under COBRA. Contact COBRAGuard/iTedium at (866) 442-6272 with questions about benefit continuation.

Rewards Program

You have 90 days from your separation date to redeem any points in your account. To place an order or to ask questions about your account, call the Rewards Program Helpline at (800) 875-8284 or visit the Pinellas County Rewards Program (internal link for employees).

Short-Term (STD) and Long-Term Disability (LTD)

Any approved STD claim will continue until you have recovered or have reached your maximum benefit. UnitedHealthcare will continue to monitor your claim for additional benefits. If LTD benefits are approved, then your retirement benefit from the FRS and Social Security Administration are offsets to your maximum LTD benefit.

Tuition Reimbursement

You are eligible for reimbursement for an approved class that you successfully completed if your reimbursement request was submitted and approved prior to your separation date. For questions, contact Human Resources at learning@pinellas.gov or (727) 464-3367, option 2.

Wellness Incentive Program

The Wellness Incentive Program requires participants to be on the active payroll to receive a wellness reward payout. Pinellas County does not make payouts after you retire.

Final Payout and W-2

Final Paycheck

Your last paycheck is issued as a paper check or by direct deposit, depending on your employer (see below). Paper checks are mailed to the address on file, so be sure to update your address in OPUS before you leave.

Paper Check

  • Board of County Commissioners
  • Business Technology Services
  • Clerk of the Circuit Court
  • County Attorney’s Office
  • Forward Pinellas (MPO/PPC)
  • Human Resources
  • Office of Human Rights
  • Supervisor of Elections

Direct Deposit

  • Property Appraiser
  • Tax Collector

Leave Payout

Your annual leave balance (up to three times your annual accrual rate) and any comp time you have accrued will be paid out on your final paycheck. If you would like any portion of the leave contributed to your 457 deferred compensation plan, then you must complete a contribution change form. Unused floating holidays and personal days are not paid out at separation. DROP participants who exchanged hours when entering DROP will have their final payout amount reduced by the amount exchanged.

W-2 Forms and 1095 Forms

You will receive a W-2 and a 1095 form issued by each Appointing Authority you worked for during the year. These forms are mailed to your address of record. If you have a change of address, contact Employee Benefits at employee.benefits@pinellas.gov or call (727) 464-3367 and select option 1.

This is a summary of how your benefit plans are impacted when you retire from Pinellas County employment. For full plan details, please see the summary plan description, plan document, personnel rule or policy related to each benefit.

1/25/23