State Retiree COLAs Effective July 1, 2017

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State Retiree COLAs Effective July 1, 2017

The NC General Assembly approved a one percent (1%) COLA. Here’s what you need to know.

Who’s receiving a COLA?

The North Carolina General Assembly approved a COLA for retirees in the following systems:

  • Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS)
  • Consolidated Judicial Retirement System (CJRS)
  • Legislative Retirement System (LRS)

Why didn’t Local Governmental Employees’ Retirement System (LGERS) receive a COLA?
During its January meeting, the Board of Trustees for LGERS did not grant a COLA because the N.C. General Statutes only authorize the Board to grant a COLA when certain financial conditions are met. Specifically, there must be sufficient investment gains over preceding years to cover the additional liabilities created by a COLA. After reviewing investment gains it was determined that the Board could not approve a COLA.


When will the COLA be effective?
The COLA, approved by the General Assembly, is a one percent increase for TSERS, CJRS, and LRS members whose retirement began on or before July 1, 2016. Members with retirement effective dates between August 1, 2016, and June 1, 2017, will receive a pro-rated amount (see the chart below). The COLA is effective July. 1, 2017, and will appear in your July 25, 2017, benefit payment.

Members with retirement dates on or after July 1, 2017, will not receive the COLA.

How do I know if I’ll receive a full, one percent COLA or a pro-rated amount?
If your TSERS, CJRS, or LRS retirement became effective before August 1, 2016, you will receive a full, one percent COLA. If your retirement became effective between August 1, 2016, and June 1, 2017, you will receive a pro-rated portion of one percent based on the number of months you received an allowance. Here’s a table to show how pro-rated portions are determined:

Effective Date of Retirement Percent of COLA
Retirees Received
7/1/2016 and prior 1.0000
8/1/2016 0.9167
9/1/2016 0.8333
10/1/2016 0.7500
11/1/2016 0.6667
12/1/2016 0.5833
1/1/2017 0.5000
2/1/2017 0.4167
3/1/2017 0.3333
4/1/2017 0.2500
5/1/2017 0.1667
6/1/2017 0.0833


Have additional questions? 

Check out these Frequently Asked Questions or speak to a retirement counselor at 877-NCSECURE (877-627-3287).