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Refunding Your Member Account

Refunding Your Member Account

If you have service credit in another Texas public retirement system, termination of TRS membership and service credit may affect your eligibility for benefits from a system participating in the proportionate retirement program. If you plan to combine service credit in different systems to meet eligibility requirements, contact each system for more information.

Members who had at least five years of service credit in TRS on August 31, 2014, or members whose combined TRS service credit and service credit in a retirement system that participates in the proportionate retirement program totaled at least five years of service credit on August 31, 2014, who terminate TRS membership by withdrawing their TRS account and later resume membership on or after September 1, 2014 will be subject to the following new retirement eligibility criteria for a normal age (unreduced) service retirement annuity:

  1. Age 65 with at least five years of service credit, or
  2. Age 62 with at least five years of service credit and age plus years of service credit equals at least 80.

One of the benefits that has been authorized by law is "refund of member contributions" when your employment in Texas public education comes to an end before you are qualified for immediate payment of a retirement annuity, and you do not expect to return to a position covered by TRS.

The list below summarizes the steps required for a refund. For more information, please watch the instructional video "How to Apply for a Refund" and/or refer to the TRS brochure titled Requesting a Refund (pdf).

Step 1

You may obtain Application for Refund form (TRS 6) (pdf) from the TRS website, or by calling the TRS automated telephone system (1-800-223-8778) day or night. Complete the form, have it notarized, and send it directly to TRS. If you were employed with a TRS-covered employer within the last six months, TRS will contact your previous employer to confirm your date of termination and final monthly contributions. Your refund will not be processed until TRS has received all required contributions from your previous employer.

Step 2

If TRS membership records indicate that you have at least five years of service credit with the system, TRS will send you a Waiver of Benefits form (TRS 287), which you must sign and return to TRS. By signing this form, you acknowledge that by accepting a refund, you cancel your TRS service credit and forfeit eligibility for all benefits.

Step 3

If you indicate on form TRS 6 (pdf) that you wish to roll over all or a portion of your contributions, TRS will send you a Refund Rollover Election form (TRS 6A). TRS 6A must be completed and signed by you and a representative of the financial institution that will be accepting the rollover.

Step 4

After all the required documents have been received by TRS and the account has been reconciled, TRS will request that the State Comptroller of Public Accounts issue you a refund warrant. Payments are generally mailed the same day that TRS receives them from the Comptroller's Office. A refund will not be issued if records indicate that you have been re-employed by a TRS-covered employer.

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