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Old 08-30-2011, 09:53 PM
 
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Default TX teacher's retirement question

We can't figure this out from the website---

can you borrow against your teacher's retirement---like from a 401K?
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:19 AM
 
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Far as I know, you can't. It is really a traditional pension plan rather than an individual account like a 401k so you don't really have a personal account balance against which you can borrow. It's more like social security.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
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Texasdiver is correct, except that the TRS isn't bankrupt.
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScoPro View Post
Texasdiver is correct, except that the TRS isn't bankrupt.
Guess again.

From the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, Feb 1, 2011 :
"Eight of the Texas [public pension] plans will never eliminate their unfunded liability at current funding levels, board records show. At the top of the list is the state's largest pension fund, the Teacher Retirement System of Texas. It accounts for about half of the $42 billion shortage, according to board records. TRS managers, however, since late 2009 have chopped in half its unfunded liability to about $23 billion."
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:56 PM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
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That does not mean the TRS is bankrupt.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScoPro View Post
That does not mean the TRS is bankrupt.
How would YOU describe an entity whose obligations - right now, today - outweigh their incoming funds to the sum of 20+ billion dollars? I was replying to a poster who characterized social-security as 'bankrupt'. Give me your best argument re how TRS differs from SS, in the 'bankrupt' scenario, over the next 20 years.

I'm one of the rare handful of folks who are fully vested in both TRS and social security for my retirement. I paid into TRS for 12 years and into social security for 31 years so it's all relevant to me. If I had to pick one or the other - and thank goodness, I don't - I'd go with SS in a heartbeat. If you want to talk me out of that, have at it, my next 20 years [of retirement] depend upon it and I'm honestly all ears.
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:05 AM
 
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too bad that you are fully vested in both TRS and SS--cause you won't get 100% of both when you go to file for retirement...
have you read about the "offset provision"?
and the current SS laws will also reduce whatever spousal SS you are entitled to receive as well based on what your TRS pension amount is

TRS is not bankrupt--but the TX legislature is doing all it can to cause it tremendous harm...and the legislature would love to get its greedy paws on TRS money and combine with the state's own pension plan so it can use the assets to alievate some of the state's own funding problems...

TRS will have reduced contributions in the future because I forsee the hiring of fewer teachers and reduced salaries--
administrators are the ones who have benefitted the most from TRS pension strategies, not teachers or support staff, and they have benefitted from some of the past options to take withdrawals to invest in other vehicles...

there was a real wave of retirements in the past 8-10 yrs and many people withdrew large portions of their pensions in lump sum settlements and still maintained an ongoing pension annuity--

that allowed people to safeguard part of their TRS pension for themselves and their heirs--they could invest it in tax-sheltered vehicles and make it part of their estate when they die--something that does not happen with the portion still under TRS control...

if you choose to have your pension annuity pass to another person after your death--a spouse or another individual--your annual monthly pension is reduced based on the age of the 2nd party--and the length of time that will occur--it could be for only 5 yrs or for the lifetime of the second party--

I choose to have mine pass in perpetunity to my spouse--who is actually a few months younger than I am--because there was not a significant reduction--but for some people who want to continue that annunity there could be...

Frankly I think that TRS is one of the best run retirement programs in the US--
if for no other reason than you have more input into the board choices--
YOU as a member of the TRS pension plan get to vote for them directly--and can contact them about your concerns with how the monies are managed and what the legislature is trying to do with how it funds its contribution for those paying into TRS--

you can get knowledgeable, helpful responses from the people working at TRS if you have questions about your pension options--
I spent lot of time on the phone before I took early retirement 9 yrs ago--discussing my options with TRS personnel--
I found them all to be very honest about the choices I could make--they will not give info about SS because that is not their area of expertise--but they gave me good advice that helped me increase my pension annuity significantly
I bought 3 more years toward retirement total before I retired and that basically allowed me to almost double my monthly pension--I paid off the amount I had to spend within 5 yrs so the rest is just gravy--you can't ask for better return on your investment than that...
at the time I retired the SS workaround to safeguard my spousal SS amount was also available and I took advantage of that because my spousal SS portion is much more than my own SS pension would be--and is about as much as my TRS pension

unfortunately I know plenty of people who came into teaching after working years and years in the normal business world and they are fully funded in SS--and will see that amount reduced because of what they also earn in TRS pension--that is big theft by the US government--and something that many of them have no clue about since the human resource depts of ISDs aren't telling them that when they go to work for schools--
nor do the ALT training companies explain how people are putting their vested SS contributions at risk for future retirees...


so yes--TRS is not perfect but as an investment vehicle I think it is as well-managed or better than SS and have no worries about my ongoing pension
the teachers who are in their 30s and 40s and looking at TRS for retirement are at the mercy of the economy and the TX legislature--neither one proven to be logical or dependable...
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:16 AM
 
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and while I do not think you can borrow against your TRS pension--just call the TRS number in Austin--
the people there are knowledgeable and helpful and you can find out the answer quickly
might even be on the TRS website
Teacher Retirement System of Texas: TRS

and this is regarding the valuation in the TRS annuity fund
http://www.trs.state.tx.us/global.js...n_pension_fund
note that the Legislature's contribution to the fund (the employer's contribution basically) has dropped for future funding by more than half a percent--that is significant when you are considering massive amounts of funding and the loss of the compounding of that contribution over decades...
once lost, it is very, very difficult to replace that via just the investment return...

anyone paying into this fund as current employee needs to start voting for legislature members who will correct this imbalance--and that would not be more Republican candidates from what I have seen...
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Old 09-02-2011, 12:43 PM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
4,697 posts, read 2,827,226 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
How would YOU describe an entity whose obligations - right now, today - outweigh their incoming funds to the sum of 20+ billion dollars? I was replying to a poster who characterized social-security as 'bankrupt'. Give me your best argument re how TRS differs from SS, in the 'bankrupt' scenario, over the next 20 years.

I'm one of the rare handful of folks who are fully vested in both TRS and social security for my retirement. I paid into TRS for 12 years and into social security for 31 years so it's all relevant to me. If I had to pick one or the other - and thank goodness, I don't - I'd go with SS in a heartbeat. If you want to talk me out of that, have at it, my next 20 years [of retirement] depend upon it and I'm honestly all ears.
The TRS fund consists of actual investments in stocks, bonds, securities, etc...and it is running a surplus now.

There is no SS fund - it's empty for the future obligations.....nothing but IOUs for the money spent long ago - and it has been running a negative cash flow for over a year and will go exponentially deeper in the red over the next two decades.

The TRS is in relatively good shape with it's liquid assets, and future fiscal obligations can be met with less drastic cuts than will be necessary for SS.

Last edited by ScoPro; 09-02-2011 at 12:51 PM..
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Old 09-02-2011, 12:49 PM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
4,697 posts, read 2,827,226 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
and while I do not think you can borrow against your TRS pension--just call the TRS number in Austin--
the people there are knowledgeable and helpful and you can find out the answer quickly
might even be on the TRS website
Teacher Retirement System of Texas: TRS

and this is regarding the valuation in the TRS annuity fund
2010 Actuarial Valuation Report for the Pension Fund
note that the Legislature's contribution to the fund (the employer's contribution basically) has dropped for future funding by more than half a percent--that is significant when you are considering massive amounts of funding and the loss of the compounding of that contribution over decades...
once lost, it is very, very difficult to replace that via just the investment return...

anyone paying into this fund as current employee needs to start voting for legislature members who will correct this imbalance--and that would not be more Republican candidates from what I have seen...
Texas taxpayers will determine if they want legislators who will raise taxes to increase the funding. If the present economic crisis continues to deepen, that isn't going to happen. Future beneficiaries are going to have lower benefits.

Nobody likes that, especially those of us who haven't seen a TRS annuity increase in 10 years. Times are lean, but hopefully they'll get better.
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