ASRS is a defined benefit plan qualified under Internal Revenue Code 401(a) that provides a monthly benefit at normal retirement.


  • Classified Staff- You must participate ASRS if you work 20 or more hours per week for at least 20 weeks during the fiscal year
  • Appointed Staff and Faculty - You may elect to participate in either the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) plan or the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP). Your election must be made within 30 calendar days of eligibility, or you will be enrolled in ASRS.

Waiting period

You will be enrolled and your contributions will begin effective:

  • New Members: the first day of the pay period following 183 day of continuous service.
  • Current Members: at hire if you have an active retirement account.

There is a 183-calendar day (26-week) waiting period before a newly eligible employee can participant in the plan. Contributions begin the first day of the pay period following the waiting period. Contributions and membership in ASRS begin at hire for employees with an active ASRS account.


 Both you and the university contribute to ASRS. Contributions cover the pension and long-term disability benefit.

Current Fiscal Year (July 1, 2013 - June 30, 2013)
RetirementLong Term Disability Total 
You          11.30%         .24%          11.54%         
Note: Contributions amounts are subject to change.


Vesting refers to the requirement of service before “owning” all funds in your account. In the case of pre-retirement separation from university employment you may withdraw or transfer vested contribution upon separation from employment.
Your ContributionsUniversity Contributions
You are always 100% vested in your own contributionsIf you were hired 
  • prior to 07/01/2011, you will become partially vested after five years of service and fully vested after 10 years of service
  • on or after, 07/01/2011, the university's contribution do not vest unless you separate due to involuntary reductions in force or position elimination.

Normal retirement

Normal retirement is the earliest you can retire with a full benefit. The requirements for normal retirement are based on your hire date: 

Hired prior to July 1, 2011Hired on or after July 1, 2011
  • Age 65
  • Age 62 & 10 years of service
  • 80 points (Age+Service)
  • Age 65
  • Age 62 & 10 years of service
  • Age 60 & 25 years of service
  • Age 55 & 30 years of service

Early retirement

In some cases you may retire early with a reduced benefit as early as age 50 and 5 years of service.