8.12 – Retirement, Educational (ERB)

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Scope: NMSU System

Source: ARP Chapter 8 | HR-Benefits

Responsible Executive: Vice President Administration and Finance

Responsible Administrator:

Last Updated: 01/18/2023



RPM 1.10 - NMSU System Policies and Procedures

ARP 1.10 - Procedures to Revise NMSU Policies and Rules

ARP 6.15 - Re-Employment of Retirees

See also:

ARP 8.65 – Emeritus Status

Revision History:

01/18/2023 Amendment approved by Chancellor

10/09/2019 Amendment approved by Chancellor
2017 Recompilation, formerly Rule 7.26
08/19/2013 Amendment approved by Board of Regents
06/20/2013 Amendment approved by Board of Regents
10/22/2007 Amendment approved by Board of Regents


To clarify retirement benefits offered and/or required of university employees by the New Mexico Educational Retirement Board (NMERB).



The Office of Human Resource Services administers this Rule, consistent with the New Mexico Retirement Act, and guidance from the NMERB.



(See Also ARP 6.15, Part 3)

NMERB refers to the state of New Mexico’s Educational Retirement Board, the statutorily authorized administrator of the New Mexico Educational Retirement Act, NMSA 1978, 22-11-1 through 22-11-55, which governs the retirement rights of eligible employees.



  1. Membership: As a condition of employment, all eligible employees are required to participate in the Educational Retirement and Disability Plan for educational institutions in the state of New Mexico as administered by the New Mexico Educational Retirement Board (NMERB).  Certain employees may qualify to participate in an Alternative Retirement Plan (an optional defined-contribution plan).  Eligible employees have a limited period of time from the date of hire to exercise this option.  While the alternative retirement plan is distinct from the defined benefit plan (directly administered by the NMERB), retirees under the alternative retirement plan are still considered NMERB retirees.  Details regarding this option are available by contacting the Office of Human Resource Services, or at the NMERB Website.  Employees who are not eligible to participate include the following:
    1. NMERB retirees who are re-employed under a NMERB Return to Work Provision and work an amount equal to 0.25 FTE (i.e. 25% of the full-time equivalency) or earn less than $15,000 per fiscal year;
    2. All employees, who work 0.25 FTE or less. For purposes of calculating FTE, employment with all NMERB employers shall be aggregated;
    3. All students enrolled in any public school, grades 1-12;
    4. Student employees (including graduate assistants);
    5. All personnel of the Cooperative Extension Service who are on federal appointment are required to participate in the Federal Civil Service Retirement Program. This group consists of county extension agents, extension home economists, and state office (supervisory) personnel who have the option of exempting themselves from membership in the New Mexico Educational Retirement Plan.  This option must be determined by the employee within the first 6 months of employment by the university, after which time the employee may not exempt themselves, but may revoke the exemption;
    6. Public Employee Retirement Act (PERA) retirees who have not rescinded their PERA retirement. PERA Retirees are required to provide documentation of retirement upon employment;
    7. Employees deemed exempt prior to July 1, 1971; however, such employees may revoke their exemption at any future date by completing the necessary forms.
  2. Contributions and Withdrawals: Contributions are made according to the New Mexico Educational Retirement Act, and the NMERB rules/regulations.  Employees may withdraw their contributions upon termination of employment.
  3. Request for Retirement and Options Elections: Approximately 3 months prior to the desired retirement date, the employee should contact the Office of Human Resource Services to complete appropriate retirement application forms. The NMERB will send the employee information regarding retirement benefits to be received. The Office of Human Resource Services will provide information regarding NMSU Retiree benefits available after retirement.
  4. NMSU Retiree Benefit Eligibility: An employee will be considered eligible for certain university retirement benefits if the following criteria are met (The university reserves the right to unilaterally increase, decrease or discontinue all or any retiree benefits and/or charges associated with available benefits.):
    1. An employee has at least 10 continuous years of service, in the status of regular employee at 0.5 FTE or more, without a break in service during the 10 years prior to the date of retirement, and receives NMERB benefits immediately upon termination of employment;
    2. An employee is eligible for retirement under NMERB rules/regulations at the time of termination of employment at the university.
    3. An employee of the Cooperative Extension Service must be eligible for and receive federal retirement.
  5. Benefits Offered by NMSU to NMSU Retirees: A list of the university-provided, nontransferable benefits available to eligible NMSU retirees, and if indicated (*), to their spouse or domestic partner is located on the Benefit Services website.


Consistent with RPM 1.10 and ARP 1.10, the Assistant Vice President for Human Resource Services may promulgate and post supplemental guidelines and/or required forms, to facilitate implementation, application or enforcement of this Rule.