Can you please define “lifetime annuity” and “180 garanteed payments?” And can you tell me how they compare?
Life Income Annuity and Life Income with Guaranteed Payments are two types of retirement benefit payment options. Depending on your plan membership and marital status, you may have other options, too.
Part of step 2 of the retirement process, completing your Retirement Election Form, includes choosing your benefit payment option. This election determines if a benefit will potentially be paid to anyone else after your death. Regardless of the payment option you elect, once you complete the retirement process with MOSERS, you will receive a benefit payment each month for your lifetime.
If you choose Life Income Annuity, your retirement benefit will not be reduced but no survivor benefits will be paid to anyone after your death (other than the payment that is sent at the end of the month in which you die). If you are married and choose this option, your spouse must consent and waive their right to a survivor benefit by completing a form that MOSERS will send to you.
If you choose Life Income with Guaranteed Payments, your retirement benefit will be reduced for your lifetime. The guaranteed period starts on the effective date of your retirement (not at the time of your death) and extends for the term selected: 60 Guaranteed Payments (available in the MSEP), 120 Guaranteed Payments (available in MSEP and MSEP 2000), or 180 Guaranteed Payments (available in the MSEP 2000). At minimum, the guaranteed number of payments you elected will be paid by MOSERS either to you, to your beneficiary, or as a combination with some paid to you and the remainder paid to your beneficiary. If you have received all payments in the guaranteed period, you will continue to receive your monthly benefit for your lifetime but your beneficiary(ies) will receive only the payment that is sent at the end of the month in which you die. Life Income with Guaranteed Payments is an option sometimes elected by members who are not married, have no minor children, and think they may not live long in retirement. It allows them to have any remaining payments in the guaranteed payment period go to another person, an organization, or a trust. You may name more than one beneficiary with this benefit payment option.
It may be helpful to generate a benefit estimate on our website or request one from a benefit counselor to compare your options. We also have a Comparison Calculator online where you can input different benefit payment options and compare them over time.
Benefit payment options for general state employees in the MSEP and MSEP 2000 are explained in more detail during our PreRetirement Seminars and on pages 18-21 of the PreRetirement Seminar reference book.