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Retiring from the University

As you plan for your upcoming retirement, please use the retirement timeline below as a guide for a smooth transition. If you have questions at any stage, please contact Benefit Services at

Many factors must be taken into consideration as you plan for your retirement. The timeline below will provide information and resources on the following topics:

  • Financial planning for retirement
  • U of I Retiree Health Plan (your eligibility is determined by your retirement tier) 
  • Medicare and other health insurance coverage
  • Faculty emeriti and honored staff privileges
  • U of I employee separation process

Please see FSH 3730 for full details on retirement eligibility. Note that this information is about university retirement. Your retirement eligibility for Social Security, PERSI, etc. may be different.

Retirement Timeline

Three to four years in advance

As you plan for a secure retirement, it’s important to determine how much income you will receive in retirement from Social Security, your university retirement plan (PERSI or ORP), and other supplemental accounts, investments and income you may have. The following links may be helpful:

  • If you are contributing to PERSI, review their retirement resources webpage. You can use their retirement calculator to estimate your income at any time by logging in to your myPERSI account, or if you are close to retirement you may contact PERSI for an official estimate.
  • If you are contributing to the ORP, contact your vendor for assistance:
  • You can research your social security benefits at

Representatives from PERSI, ORP and the Social Security Administration periodically offer information sessions or one-on-one counseling to U of I employees. Watch The Daily Register for announcements about these opportunities.

We encourage you to meet with a financial advisor to discuss your retirement plans and budget. If you don’t already have an advisor, the following resources may assist you with finding one.

Retirement is an exciting transition, but it can also be challenging to adjust to such a significant change in your lifestyle. We encourage you to plan ahead for the non-financial aspects of your retirement as well, considering possibilities such as volunteering, hobbies, travel and how you will spend time with family.

One to two years in advance

Continue to monitor your estimated retirement income and to meet with a financial advisor as needed, using the resources above. You may wish to develop a more detailed budget for your income and expenses in retirement.

Submit a tier request. Benefit Services will calculate your university retirement tier and let you know what retiree health plan you may be eligible for through the university (if any).

After calculating your tier, Benefit Services will also invite you to meet one-on-one in person or via phone/video call to discuss your retirement plans.

All retirement planning inquiries and conversations are confidential.

If you are eligible for the Retiree Health Plan, you will receive counseling from Benefit Services on your options.

If you are not eligible for retiree medical coverage through the university or feel that the university plan is not the best fit for your needs, you may choose to purchase coverage elsewhere. Research your options carefully. The following resources may be helpful:

Begin discussions with your supervisor and unit about your approximate retirement date. This is especially helpful for faculty and others on continuing appointments.

If you are a faculty member, please review FSH 1565E to see if you may be eligible for emeritus privileges when you retire.

Two to four months in advance

Consult with Benefit Services to discuss a specific retirement date that will ensure a smooth transition to the retiree health plan (if applicable).

Submit a written notice of resignation to your supervisor (email is acceptable). Provide Benefit Services with a copy of your written resignation and your supervisor's acknowledgement of receiving it.

If you have accrued annual leave, review your leave balance with your supervisor or department head. You may be asked to use some or all of your leave prior to retirement. Unused annual leave is paid out on your final paycheck. You may also choose to donate your unused annual leave to the Shared Leave Program.

Unused sick leave is not paid out and has no cash value. The University of Idaho does not offer sick leave conversion options under the State of Idaho retiree health plan provision.

Work with Benefit Services to complete and submit any necessary documents. This may include:

  • Retiree Election form, to choose a plan or waive coverage under the retiree health plan
  • Pre-authorized bank draft form for payment of retiree health plan costs
  • Beneficiary Designation Form (if Tier 1-eligible)
  • NCPERS Continuation of Benefit form (if enrolled in NCPERS and planning to continue coverage)
  • Honored Staff Email Access Request form (if eligible for honored staff privileges)

Inform your retirement plan providers of your retirement date and initiate the process of claiming benefits. This may include the Social Security Office, PERSI, TIAA, Corbridge Financial and any supplemental retirement vendors or Federal Retirement Program.

Last month of work

Review and complete the Employee Exit Checklist.

In order to maintain insurance coverage until your last day of work, you must work on your last day (your final day cannot be taken as annual leave or comp time).

Sign up for Medicare if you will be over 65 or otherwise eligible upon retirement.

If you are transitioning to the University of Idaho retiree health plan, please carefully review the transition information.

If you are transitioning to other insurance, carefully review the information from your provider and make sure you understand how to begin accessing care under your new plan.

Consider joining the University of Idaho Retiree Association (UIRA). Membership is free and open to all university retirees.

If you are a staff member, Benefit Services will confirm whether you are eligible for honored staff retiree privileges. Privileges include education benefits, a free gold parking permit and access to services provided by the Office of Information Technology. For eligibility requirements and a full list of privileges, please review FSH 3730.

If you qualify for Honored Staff Retiree Privileges, you may wish to:

  • Request a new VandalCard with retiree status
  • Return your current parking permit to Parking and Transportation Services to obtain your gold retiree parking permit.
  • If you choose to maintain an active university email account, complete the Honored Staff Retiree Email Request Form (provided by Benefit Services). Benefit Services will return the form to you and you may provide it to your OIT Technology Solutions Partner for assistance getting your account set up. Once this is done, you will receive continued access to services provided by OIT including technical support and software.

If you are a faculty member, consult with your college and the Provost’s Office on the emeriti privileges available to you (outlined in FSH 1565E). If emeriti privileges are granted, you will receive a confirmation letter from the Provost’s Office.

If you qualify for emeriti privileges, you may wish to:

  • Request a new VandalCard with retiree status
  • Return your current parking permit to Parking and Transportation Services to obtain your gold retiree parking permit.
  • If you choose to maintain an active university email account, provide your confirmation letter to your OIT Technology Solutions Partner for assistance getting your account set up. Once this is done, you will receive continued access to OIT services including technical support and software.

After retirement

If you ever consider returning to work at U of I in a new capacity following retirement, please be sure to contact Benefit Services to understand how it may affect your retirement benefits.

If you were enrolled in PERSI and consider returning to work at U of I or any other PERSI employer, you should also visit the PERSI website or contact PERSI to understand how this may affect your PERSI benefit.

Physical Address:
415 West 6th Street
Moscow, ID 83844-4332 

Mailing Address:

875 Perimeter Drive MS 4332
Moscow, ID 83844-4332

Summer Hours:
Monday - Friday: 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Academic Year Hours:
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Phone: 208-885-3697

Fax: 208-885-3330