Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 51.1. Pensions, Benefits, and Retirement
Chapter 1. Virginia Retirement System
5/16/2021

§ 51.1-144. Member contributions.

A. Each member shall contribute five percent of his creditable compensation for each pay period for which he receives compensation.

The employer shall deduct the contribution payable by the member. Every employee accepting employment shall be deemed to consent and agree to any deductions from his compensation required by this chapter.

B. In determining the creditable compensation of a member in a payroll period, the Board may consider the rate of compensation payable to the member on the date of entry or removal of his name from the payroll as having been received throughout the month if service for the month is creditable. If service for the month is not creditable, the Board may consider any compensation payable during the month as not being creditable compensation.

C. The minimum compensation provided by law for any member shall be reduced by the deduction required by this section. Except for any benefits provided by this chapter, payment of compensation minus the deductions shall be a full and complete discharge of all claims for services rendered by the member during the period covered by the payment.

D. No deduction shall be made from any member's compensation if the employer's contribution is in default.

E. The Board may modify the method of collecting the contributions of members so that the employer may retain the amounts deducted from members' salaries and have a corresponding amount deducted from state funds otherwise payable to the employer.

F. 1. Only as provided in subdivisions 3 and 4 may any employer elect to pay an equivalent amount in lieu of any member contributions required of its employees. Such payments shall be credited to the members' contribution account. These contributions shall not be considered wages for purposes of Chapter 7 (§ 51.1-700 et seq.), nor shall they be considered to be salary for purposes of this chapter.

2. A person who becomes a member on or after July 1, 2010, shall be required to pay member contributions on a salary reduction basis in accordance with § 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code in the amount of five percent of creditable compensation if the person is (i) a member covered by the defined benefit plan established under this chapter, (ii) a member of the State Police Officers' Retirement System under Chapter 2 (§ 51.1-200 et seq.), (iii) a member of the Virginia Law Officers' Retirement System under Chapter 2.1 (§ 51.1-211 et seq.), (iv) a member of the Judicial Retirement System under Chapter 3 (§ 51.1-300 et seq.), or (v) earning the benefits permitted by § 51.1-138.

3. A member who is an employee of a county, city, town, or other local employer other than a local public school board, regardless of whether the member is a person who becomes a member on or after July 1, 2010, shall be required to pay member contributions on a salary reduction basis in accordance with § 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code in the amount of five percent of creditable compensation as follows: (i) any member who commences or recommences employment on or after July 1, 2012, shall be required to contribute five percent of his creditable compensation upon commencing or recommencing employment and (ii) members in service on June 30, 2012, shall be required to contribute five percent of their creditable compensation no later than July 1, 2016. Such member described in subdivision (ii) shall contribute a minimum of an additional one percent of his creditable compensation beginning on each July 1 of 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016, or until the member's contribution equals five percent of creditable compensation, but the county, city, town, or other local employer other than a local public school board may elect to require members to contribute more than an additional one percent each year, in whole percentages. In no case shall a member be required to contribute more than five percent of his creditable compensation for each pay period for which he receives compensation. No county, city, town, or other local employer other than a local public school board shall be allowed to elect to pay any amount of member contributions except to pay the difference between five percent and the employee contribution during the phase-in period described in this subdivision for a member who was in service on June 30, 2012.

4. A member who is an employee of a local public school board, regardless of whether the member is a person who becomes a member on or after July 1, 2010, shall be required to pay member contributions on a salary reduction basis in accordance with § 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code in the amount of five percent of creditable compensation as follows: (i) any member who commences or recommences employment on or after July 1, 2012, shall be required to contribute five percent of his creditable compensation upon commencing or recommencing employment and (ii) members in service on June 30, 2012, shall be required to contribute five percent of their creditable compensation no later than July 1, 2016. Such member described in subdivision (ii) shall contribute a minimum of an additional one percent of his creditable compensation beginning on each July 1 of 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016, or until the member's contribution equals five percent of creditable compensation, but the local public school board employer may elect to require members to contribute more than an additional one percent each year, in whole percentages. In no case shall a member be required to contribute more than five percent of his creditable compensation for each pay period for which he receives compensation. No local public school board employer shall be allowed to elect to pay any amount of member contributions except to pay the difference between five percent and the employee contribution during the phase-in period described in this subdivision for a member who was in service on June 30, 2012.

G. The Board may develop procedures to effect the transfer of member contributions paid by employers on or after July 1, 1980, and accrued interest on those contributions, to the member contribution account of the member, if such contributions have been previously deposited into the retirement allowance account of the employer.

1952, c. 157, §§ 51-111.13, 51-111.46; 1956, c. 560; 1960, c. 604; 1966, c. 174; 1972, c. 568; 1974, c. 353; 1976, c. 537; 1980, c. 722, § 51-111.46:1; 1982, c. 467; 1984, c. 430; 1990, c. 832; 1998, c. 660; 2001, cc. 693, 702; 2002, c. 307; 2010, cc. 737, 738; 2012, c. 822; 2013, c. 463.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.