Retirement Contributions for Traditional Pay

The Wyoming Retirement System (WRS) has defined what constitutes pension eligible compensation. WRS will review contributions and employee compensation to ensure compliance with applicable law and regulation.

WRS cannot accept retirement contributions on nonrecurring payments to employees. Nonrecurring payments are considered equivalent to bonuses paid in addition to base salary and have the potential to "spike" retirement benefits without providing the consistent funding necessary to pay future benefits.

Below is a chart describing the most common pay type’s employer’s encounter and whether the pay is pension eligible?

Pay Type Description/Examples Pension Eligible Explanation
Bonuses Financial compensation above and beyond the normal payment expectations of the recipient. No   
Cell Phone  Cell phone reimbursement stipends: a sum of money given to employees to purchase a cell phone or a cell phone plan. No  
Comp Time 
Compensatory Time
Paid time off given to an employee instead of overtime pay in compensation for extra hours of work. Yes If paid out in the year earned, it needs to be broken out into months earned.
Disability Benefits 
Disability Insurance
 
Disability insurance: replaces a certain percentage of an employee’s gross monthly income. No  
Early Retirement Incentive Pay (ERIP) Pay intended as incentive for employees approaching or at retirement age to retire earlier than they might have otherwise. No  
Extra Duty Payments
An allowance payable to employees who are given special assignments or perform additional duties.  
Examples: coaching, summer school, activity bus driving, etc.
 
Yes  
Fringe Benefits An extra benefit supplementing an employee's salary.
Examples: company car, subsidized meals, health insurance, etc.
No  
Housing Allowances
Reimbursement to an employee for basic living expenses.
No  
Medical Insurance (paid by the employer)
Employer paid health insurance premiums.
No  
National Board Certification (NBC)
NBC is a voluntary, advanced teaching credential that goes beyond state licensure.
Yes If paid in the calendar year earned.
On-Call Pay Pay issued to an employee while on-call. Yes  
Retroactive Compensation
Examples: court orders, arbitration awards, grievance settlements. Etc. Yes  
Service Rendered Pay
Pay earned by an employee for service rendered.
Yes  
Severance Pay
Lump sum payment to an employee upon dismissal or discharge from employment.
No
Transportation Expenses
Specific reimbursement for the cost of business transportation by car, plane, train, etc. 
Examples: vehicle expenses, fuel, mileage, parking fees, lodging, meals or telephone charges.
No
Unused Leave
Lump sum payout of unused time.
Examples: lump sum payout at the end of employment for unused sick, annual, or admin leave. 
No  
Used Leave
Pay for use of accrued paid time off. 
Examples: administrative, sabbatical, annual, sick, vacation, or personal leave;
Yes  
Workers Compensation
(non-State Agency)
Benefits to an employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness. Helps pay for medical care, wages from lost work, etc.
No  
Workers Compensation
(State Agency)
Benefits to an employee who suffers a work-related injury or illness. Yes Up to six months per Wyo. Stat. 9-2-1022(g).

Additional Payment Types Information

  • Payments received by an employee in lieu of previously employer-provided fringe benefits under an agreement between the employee and participating employer entered into within sixty (60) months before retirement or any other payment which may reasonably be construed to be a fringe benefit are not pension eligible.
  • Any payment made during any three-year period of employment deemed to increase the highest average salary for the primary purpose of increasing a retirement benefit is not pension eligible.
  • Nonrecurring lump-sum payments to employees who have reached the highest level of pay in their pay grade (i.e., “red lined”) are not pension eligible.
  • Call for specific pay types not listed on this webpage for WRS staff to review and provide guidance regarding eligible compensation.