What to Expect

Final Calculations

We will calculate your allowance after we receive payroll reports from the last time you were paid. The final figures should not differ substantially from the estimates you receive, but bear in mind the estimates are estimates.

It may take us some time to get all the numbers together, and you may not receive a check during the first month of your retirement. Once you are on the payroll, we will catch you up with any previous months that are due to you.

Monthly Allowance

Your allowance will be paid monthly on the last day of the month. Checks will be mailed. If you have requested direct deposit, we will mail a statement to you.

At the end of the year, we will send you a 1099R form, which will tell you how much of your allowance is taxable. If you began work after 1988, all of your allowance is taxable. If you contributed money before 1988, a portion of your contributions will be non-taxable over the first few years of your allowance. Once it has all been used, your entire allowance will be taxable.


You will be required, by state law, to sign a form each January stating that you are still living and entitled to continue receiving benefits. The form will be included with your retirement check. Please return this form quickly. If we do not receive it by the deadline, we are required to stop your allowance. Also make sure that you notify us of any change of address, change in marital status, or change in beneficiaries.

You can continue to work after retirement. The State has limits on what you can earn in public sector employment. You cannot work more than 960 hours in a year, and your earnings plus your allowance cannot be more than your current salary in the first full year of retirement. After the first full calendar year of retirement, you are entitled to earn $15,000 a year over that amount. There are no limits on employment in the private sector.

Cost-of-Living Adjustment

In the spring of each year, the Retirement Board usually considers a cost-of-living increase for retirees, which in recent years has been an increase of 3% on the first $13,000 of your allowance. This allows for a maximum of $390 a year.

There is an organization for public retirees, which you are invited to join. The organization provides advocacy for public retirement issues in Boston, and keeps members informed of legislation in progress. You may join this group here.