If an employee is on military leave, workers’ compensation, FMLA, or any other type of extended leave without pay and a contribution will not be submitted for at least one month, you must put them on a service break.

If an employee is on leave without pay for less than one month (and contributions will be submitted for that individual during that month) submitting a service break is not required. Hours worked by the employee must be submitted accurately.

If an employee is participating in the Prudential Life Insurance program, payments must be continued by the employee for coverage to continue. The employee should contact the administrator of Prudential, NCPERS, to make these arrangements. Please call 800-525-8600 or visit the Prudential website.

Reporting Service Breaks

When an employee takes an unpaid break from service but remains employed, you will upload a record with a record type of StartServiceBreak to start their break, ContinueServiceBreak for each pay period they remain on break and EndServiceBreak for the pay period in which they end their break. Service break codes include Military, Workers Comp, Leave Without Pay, FMLA, and Off Contract (Search & Rescue agencies should only use suspension). The Service Break record should be a separate row from any regularly reported contributions.  

When completing the monthly contribution upload, make sure to accurately specify whether an employee is terminated or on a service break. Employers sometimes terminate an employee when the employee is actually on a service break. This could result in the employee being moved from the Public Employee Plan Tier 1 to Tier 2, which has a reduced benefit structure.

For complete instructions, view the Employer Portal User Guide.

Military Service Breaks & Service Credit

An employee who has been deployed may receive retirement credit pursuant to the Uniformed Service Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), as long as the following requirements are met:

  1. The employee was employed by a participating employer of WRS immediately prior to entering the armed forces.
  2. The employee returned to employment with a qualifying employer of WRS within the timeframe specified by USERRA.
  3. The employee received an honorable discharge.
  4. The employee meets any other requirement under USERRA.

Employers shall provide WRS with notice of reemployment via the contribution template.

If the employee would have been responsible for the employee portion of the contribution, the employee is required to pay his/her share of the contribution on the service missed to the employer, and the employer is required to pay both the employer and employee contributions to WRS. At times, the Legislature appropriates funding to assist with military make-up payments for employees. Any employee payments must be made within five years of the employee’s reemployment date.

If military service credit applies to one of your employees, the employee must provide a DD214 form or an NGB Form 22 (Report of Separation and Record of Service). These documents verify types of discharge and dates of deployment. There may be other documentation that is acceptable, so please contact WRS with any questions.

Qualifying employees must be given the opportunity to make additional deferrals to the 457 Plan within five years of reemployment and the employer shall make any matching contributions which would have been required had such deferral actually been made during the period of qualified military service. Contact the 457 Plan with any questions.