Retirement - Announcements & Updates

Retirement Announcements & Updates

Posted September 8, 2015
TIAA-CREF Announces On-Campus Individual Counseling Sessions for September and October 2015
Dates for September include September 1, 2, 9, 10, 18, 25 and 30, 2015.
Dates for October include October 1, 8, 13, 16, and 20, 2015.
To schedule an individual session, please visit TIAA-CREF or call (800) 732-8353.

Posted June 22, 2015
Qualified 401(a) Retirement Plan loan policy changes
effective July 1, 2015.

WVU benefit-eligible employees who participate in either TIAA-CREF or Great West (Empowerment Retirement) through the West Virginia Higher Education Qualified 401(a) Retirement Plan will be receiving a mailing to their home address regarding changes to the current 401(a) Loan Policy. The West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC) and the West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education (CTCS) are taking seriously their commitment to help keep employee’s financial futures on track and to maintain the integrity of the retirement programs. Effective July 1, 2015 the following changes will be implemented:
* No more than three loans can be outstanding at any given time. The three outstanding loan maximum includes any loans currently in default.
* All costs associated with loans made after the effective date of the provision will be borne by the borrower.
* Upon full implementation of the new WVOASIS HRM/Payroll system and implementation of the Payroll Advantage Loan program, future loans may be repaid via payroll deduction.

Click here to read more regarding the loan policy changes and for Frequently Asked Questions.

Posted January 29, 2015
IRS Increases Retirement Plan Contributions for 2015
The IRS announces increases in the limits on retirement contributions as follows:
-403(b) & 457(b) increase to $18,000 from $17,500
-Over age 50 catch up contribution increases to $6,000 from $5,500
-401(a) compensation limit increases to $265,000 from $260,000
-Grandfathered 401(a) compensation limit increases to $395,000 from $385,000
To learn more about increasing your retirement contributions through 403(b) and 457(b) Supplemental Retirement Accounts, please click here.
Or complete a Salary Reduction Agreement to make changes to an existing SRA for TIAA-CREF and Great West.

Posted January 15, 2015
CREF Introduces New Multi-Class Structure: Reduced Expense Ratios effective April 24, 2015

What’s changing and why?
CREF currently has a single-class structure. This means we have the same expense ratios across employer-sponsored and individual plans/products of all sizes. To better align our structure with the costs of serving a wide range of clients and participants, beginning April 24, 2015, we are expanding each CREF Account from one class to three classes, designated as R1, R2 and R3. As a result, CREF Account expenses will change and each class will have different expense ratios. West Virginia University’s share class is R3, the lowest available expense.
TIAA-CREF will be communicating this change directly to all participants in January 2015.
Please click here to view video with information on this topic.
Other TIAA-CREF links:
TIAA-CREF My Retirement

TIAA-CREF on Retirement
New Way To Save:

Roth 403(b) Supplemental Retirement
On Sept. 1, 2011, West Virginia University introduced the Roth 403(b) supplemental retirement account available to all employees through TIAA-CREF. With this option, you may:
  • Contribute after-tax dollars;
  • Enjoy tax-free distributions, without penalty, when you are age 59 1/2 or older and when you take a distribution five years after you made the first Roth contribution to the contract. Withdrawals of earnings prior to age 59 1/2 are subject to ordinary income tax and a 10% penalty may apply.
  • Roll over assets into a Roth Individual Retirement Account (IRA), or into/from another Roth 403(b) Supplemental Plan that accepts such assets. (Rollovers and withdrawals are subject to the provisions of your retirement plan.)

For information on the Roth Contribution Option go to:
TIAA-CREF Roth 403(b) Contribution Option Brochure
WVU - Roth 403(b) Contribution Option Information

At the current time, Roth contributions are not available to Great West 403(b) accounts.
If you have questions regarding Roth 403(b) contributions, please contact TIAA-CREF at 800-842-2776.

TIAA-CREF on Retirement
Share Class Change for Mutual Funds:

Starting on Sept. 23, 2011, participants invested in TIAA-CREF mutual funds will have assets moved to a new share class, which offers lower service fees. This change will not change plan participants’ investment allocations or cause a disruption to the management of participant investments. In addition, six new investment funds will be available. TIAA-CREF is communicating these changes directly to participants. Please see TIAA-CREF Share Class Information Pamphlet for additional information or contact TIAA-CREF at 800-842-2776.

TIAA-CREF now offering “Self-Direct Brokerage Account”

WVU employees with a supplemental retirement plan now have the opportunity to open a TIAA-CREF Self Directed Brokerage Services Account. This will allow employees to allocate retirement savings contributions into a variety of investment choices beyond the core investments offered in the plans. For more information, please see this TIAA-CREF Guide to the Self-Directed Brokerage Services Account.

TIAA-CREF offering new “Savings Simplifier Video Series”

TIAA-CREF Savings Simplifier Video Series

The videos offer practical tips on how to improve your savings, including how to get started, how to get the most from your retirement plan and how not to run out of money in retirement.

9 month faculty and summer SRA

These are the guidelines if you are a 9 month faulty contributing to a Supplemental Retirement Account (SRA) and receiving summer supplemental pay.

SRMountaineer Temps

Through the SRMountaineer Temps program, retired staff and faculty with successful careers at WVU re-engage with the University to make a difference in new ways, continue the learning process, and remain active.

What to do if working and turning 65…

Medicare Part A and PEIA:
Medicare Part A is an free entitlement available to most people at the attainment of age 65 or earlier for disability and some specific medical conditions. If you are not receiving Social Security benefits when you turn 65 you will need to sign up for Medicare Part A if you would like to have Medicare coverage. Bear in mind, if you are an actively working employee of WVU and have PEIA coverage due to your active employment, PEIA will remain your primary coverage for yourself and any dependents you have covered by PEIA. If you are already beyond age 65 and not signed up for Medicare just contact the Social Security Administration to enroll. For more information contact the Social Security Administration at 1.800.772.1213 or online at or

Medicare Part B and PEIA:
A common question asked by employees is what you are supposed to do when you turn 65 and become eligible for Medicare while working at WVU. The answer is if you are receiving health coverage through WVU as either an actively working employee, or dependent of an actively working employee you are not required to enroll in Medicare Part B which costs a minimum of $96.40 per month in 2009. You are required to have Medicare Part B as a retiree, or dependent of a retiree, when enrolled in the PEIA retiree health insurance. PEIA 2010 Summary Plan Description. has details on page 18. An easy way to remember this is if you have a PEIA health insurance deduction on your WVU paycheck, you are not required to have Medicare Part B. If you have questions regarding your particular circumstances, please call Employee Benefits at 304.293.5700×4 or the Social Security Administration at 800.772.1213, or online at or