SL 30001.350 Positions Covered By More Than One Retirement System (Section 218(d)(8))
Generally, a position is under more than one retirement system if an employee in the position can become a member of more than one retirement system. Sometimes a position is under more than one retirement system and the employee occupying the position either is a member, or has the option to become a member, of more than one retirement system. These systems are often supplemental as to their benefits but are composed of the same membership. There are also situations where the employee's position is under a retirement system but because of personal ineligibility for membership in that system the employee is given membership in another system. If a retirement system is established as a basic system for a group of employees, e.g., teachers, with provision for covering ineligibles under a separate retirement system, only the ineligibles are in positions under more than one retirement system.
Prior to the 1958 Social Security Amendments, the State had to take action with respect to each retirement system to provide coverage for employees under that retirement system.
If the position of an employee who becomes covered as part of a retirement system coverage group later comes under another retirement system, the coverage of the employee continues with the original group.
B. SERVICES COVERED AFTER 1958
The 1958 amendments authorized States to extend coverage to services performed after 1958 by employees in positions simultaneously under more than one retirement system (and at the State's option, for prior periods). An employee who is in a position under more than one retirement system is covered under the State's agreement when the employee’s retirement system coverage group is brought under the agreement unless the employee:
is not a member of the retirement system being covered, and
is a member of the non-covered retirement system.
Member for this purpose means an actual member of the retirement system. It does not include an optional who is deemed to be a member of the retirement system.
This provision applies as of the applicable date of coverage (the Section 218(e)(2) date) in the agreement/modification for the retirement system coverage group, or the date that a position under a non-covered retirement sytem is brought under a covered retirement system, whichever is later. It applies only to individuals whose positions are under a retirement system on the pertinent date. Employees hired after the applicable date are not excluded from coverage under Section 218(d)(8) of the Act solely by virtue of membership in a non-covered retirement system.
Example 1: Employees of City X may join either the Public Employees' Retirement System (PERS) or the City Employees' Retirement System (CERS). Thus, all employees of City X occupy positions under both systems. After a favorable referendum was conducted, a modification was executed on September 6, 1983 to provide Social Security coverage for all employees of City X in positions under CERS with no optional exclusions.
Employee A, who was employed by City X on the applicable date of the modification, in this case September 6, 1983, was a member of PERS on that date. Services performed in positions under PERS are not covered under the State's agreement. Thus, A's services are not covered under the State's agreement with the CERS coverage group because A was not a member of that system on September 6, 1983, and was a member of PERS, on that date.
Employee B was hired by City X on October 3, 1983, and then joined PERS. Employee B's services for City X are covered under the State's agreement because he/she was not a member of PERS on September 6, 1983, the applicable date.
Example 2: All State employees occupy positions under the State Employees' Retirement System (SERS), which was included under the State agreement on a majority vote basis by a modification executed in 1956. On November 1, 1983, the State takes over the county hospital, a separate political subdivision, and the employees become State employees. Before that date, employees of the hospital were members of the County Employees' Retirement (CERS), a non-covered retirement system. Individuals employed by the hospital on 11/1/83 had the option to continue their membership in CERS or join SERS.
Employee A elected to continue membership in CERS. Employee B elected to join SERS. Employee A is excluded from coverage because on 11/1/83, the date his position first came under SERS, he was not a member of the covered system and was a member of CERS. Employee B is covered because he became a member of SERS, a covered retirement system.
C. SERVICES COVERED PRIOR TO 1959
A State may modify its agreement to apply the Section 218(d)(8) provision to coverage extended before 1959. If a State does not modify its agreement, a member of a retirement system cannot be covered until all the bars to his coverage are removed. The following describe how coverage can be obtained in certain conditions:
1. Member of More Than One System
An employee who is a member of two or more retirement systems applicable to a single position can be covered only if all the retirement systems are included under the State agreement and provide coverage for his/her position. Coverage is effective as of the latest coverage effective date provided for the retirement system coverage groups involved.
2. Member of One System, Optional With Another System
Coverage of services of an employee who is a member of one system and who has an option to join another retirement system is subject to the same rules as an employee who is a member of more than one retirement system.
3. Member of One System, Ineligible for Membership in Another
If an employee is, with respect to the same position, a member of one system and ineligible for membership in another, the employee’s services can be covered if a favorable referendum is held for each retirement system; or a favorable referendum is held for the retirement system of which the employee is a member and the ineligibles of the system of which the employee is not a member are covered as part of, or as an addition to, the absolute coverage group which includes the employee’s position. Coverage is effective as of the latest effective date of coverage provided for the coverage groups involved.
D. TWO POSITIONS INVOLVED
If an employee occupies two positions, each of which is under a different retirement system, each position may be covered separately, if the State takes appropriate action, without regard to the coverage of the other position.