Staff Retirement Checklist
If you are a staff member who is ready to retire, use this retirement checklist to help prepare for this life change and navigate important decisions about your health and financial benefits.
1. Confirm Your Eligibility & Set a Retirement Date
- Request a retirement calculation by completing the Calculate Eligibility for Retiree Status form. This calculation determines if you are eligible for retiree health care benefits and what portion of the coverage cost you share with the university. The University HR Service Team will complete your calculation and notify you of the outcome. The calculation takes three to six weeks.
Attend a “Health Care Benefits in Retirement” workshop.
- Download the Staff Retirement Planning Guide to get started.
- Read the “When Employment Ends: Retirement” brochure which will describe what happens to your benefits when you choose to retire.
- Review retiree, medical, dental, and vision plan options.
- Determine your retirement date and notify your manager.
Ask your Human Resources manager if you are eligible for terminal vacation. If you are eligible for terminal vacation, then your last day on terminal vacation is your termination date.
2. Action Steps Two to Three Months Before Retirement
- Up to three months before retirement, contact Social Security to enroll in Medicare if you are age 65 or over or eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. You must enroll in Medicare Parts A & B. You do not need to enroll in Medicare Part D for prescription coverage because your Stanford retiree medical plan include prescriptions. Medicare requires that you pay a premium for Part B in addition to the premium you pay for your Stanford retiree health plan. Your Stanford retiree medical coverage will not begin unless you are enrolled in Medicare. Contact Medicare at www.medicare.gov or call 800-633-4227. If you postponed your enrollment in Medicare Part B when you first became eligible, you will receive an employment verification form from Social Security. Please submit this to Stanford Benefits to complete and return it to Social Security.
3. Action Steps One Month Before Retirement
- Select retiree health care coverage. Call the University HR Service Team at 650-736-2985. The team will have your completed retiree calculation and a specialist can take your elections over the phone. By recording your health care elections in advance, your retiree medical benefits will be in place on the first day of the month following your last day of work. Your active benefits cover you until the end of the month in which you stop work.
- If age 65 or over and enrolling in a Medicare Advantage Plan, complete the necessary documentation and return to Kaiser or Health Net respectively by the 15th of the month before you want your benefits to start. For example, if you want benefits to start April 1, the health plan you selected must have your completed form by March 15th.
- Apply for Social Security benefits if you choose to. To apply for benefits go to www.ssa.gov or call 800-772-1213.
- Decide what to do with your retirement savings. Talk to your accountant or a financial counselor about savings in your Stanford Contributory Retirement Plan (SCRP) and/or Staff Retirement Annuity Plan (SRAP) plans. You can leave your retirement savings in their current account(s) or request a distribution. For more information, visit the Retirement Savings section of our website.
- To request a SRAP distribution, call the Stanford University Pension Center at 877-249-6648.
- To request a SCRP distribution, contact your investment provider(s) directly: Fidelity at 888-793-8733 and/or TIAA at 800-842-2888.
4. After Retirement
- If you are over 65 or changed medical plans, look for your new medical plan ID card in the mail. Your new medical plan ID card should arrive in the email three to four weeks after your retirement date. Set up crossover billing if you are in a retiree supplement plan.
- About three weeks after you retire, you will receive a COBRA and retiree billing packet from The Vita Companies.
- If you are interested in porting or converting your life insurance or Accidental Death and Dismemberment, Prudential will send you information within two weeks from the date your active coverage ends. If you decide to convert or port coverage, you must complete and submit an enrollment form to Prudential Life within 31 days of retiring. For more information on conversion/portability, call Prudential Life Insurance at 888-257-0412.