Last Updated: 2009-11-23

The Richmond Retirement (RRS) System has entered into portability agreements with the Virginia Retirement System (VRS), Newport News Employee Retirement Fund (NNERF) and the Norfolk Employees' Retirement System (NERS). These agreements allow vested members the ability to transfer the value of their retirement benefits between the RRS and these public entities.

Portability, however, does not transfer service year for year.

Service transferred to the RRS from the VRS, NNERF or the NERS will be used for all purposes by the RRS:

  • Vesting
  • Calculating the amount of your benefit
  • Eligibility to retire
  • Eligibility to receive unreduced benefits

However, if you decide to participate in portability, you will terminate your right to any and all future benefits under the VRS, NNERF or NERS. You may purchase service that is not converted under portability within 90 days of your election to participate.

To be eligible to participate in portability, you must satisfy the following conditions:

  • Be an active member of the Defined Benefit Plan
  • Be an inactive vested member of the VRS, NNERF or NERS, i.e., you have not withdrawn your member contributions from your account with the exiting plan.

You must elect to participate in portability within 18 months of your hire date. If you do not act within this 18-month timeframe, you will forfeit your eligibility to participate.

Purchase of Prior Service

The RRS allows vested members to elect to purchase retirement credit for prior years of service to count toward retirement eligibility as follows:

  • Certified creditable service in the retirement system of another state or politicial subdivision, provided that the service will not be used to calculate retirement benefits by the other system, and/or
  • Full-time service with the city of Richmond on a temporary, seasonal, provisional, Comprehensive Employment Training Act (CETA) or contractual basis, provided that such period has not been previously included in creditable service.

NOTE: Military service and service with the federal government cannot be purchased.

The service purchased cannot be considered in determining eligibility for retirement nor the early service reduction factor if your retirement is within five years of the date of the purchase of service credit.

However, if you are newly vested with five years of service, you may elect to purchase service within 90 days of becoming vested and have immeditate use of the purchased service in determining eligibility for retirement. Any purchase of service made within 90 days of a member's effective date of retirement must be paid in a lump sum.

You must pay the following percentage of your present annual creditable compensation or your average final compensation during your 36 highest consecutive months of creditable service with the city, whichever is greater, for each year of service you wish to purchase.

  • General employees: 10 percent
  • Sworn firefighters and police officers: 15 percent

Payment may be made in a lump sum or by payroll deduction in equal installments over a period not to exceed the period of service credit being purchased.


Contact Information:

Richmond Retirement System
City of Richmond
730 E. Broad Street, Suite 900
Richmond, VA
23219 USA
Phone: (804)646-5958
Fax: (804)646-5299

Toll-Free (Outside Central Virginia): (888)288-2781
Office Hours: By Appointment Only
Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Walk-in Visits:
Monday - Friday
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
and 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

More Contact Information

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