If you rendered any of the types of service listed below, you may be eligible to purchase credit for your service. If you wish to purchase credit, you must complete and submit the appropriate service purchase applications, along with any required documentation. We will review your application, determine your eligibility to purchase your service, and send you an invoice.
Please note: All service purchases must be paid for in full prior to your date of retirement; late payments will delay your date of retirement—and because retirement benefits are retroactive only to your date of retirement, late payments will cause you to lose money!
We strongly encourage you to start the service purchase process early because it often takes some time for you and your prior employers to gather documentation of your past service.
|Types of purchasable service and application forms||Maximum time creditable||Applicable interest rate|
Other MA public service with the MTRS or a MA town, city, state, county or regional authority*, during which...
|As of April 3, 2013, actuarial interest (currently, 8.00%)***|
|MA public school substitute, temporary or part-time teaching or tutoring service *||20 years|
|Out-of-state public school teaching service ** +||10 years|
|Nonpublic, private school teaching service BEFORE 1973 ** +||10 years|
|Overseas dependent school teaching service ** +||5 years|
|Vocational education work experience **|
(for Chapter 74 certified educators)
|3 years||Buyback interest for all members (currently, 4.00%)|
|Nonpublic school teaching service in a MA publicly-funded school ^||10 years|
|Peace Corps service **||3 years|
|Pre-1975 maternity leave (except in rare situations, you must have purchased this service by 12/31/2001; however, if you believe you may qualify, please contact our office)||4 years|
Active military service in U.S. armed forces, MA National Guard or Active Reserves,** other than a military leave of absence during membership in a MA contributory retirement system
|Generally 4 years||No interest charged on first invoice, first due date; thereafter, buyback interest|
Please be advised that, in January 2014, the Division of Administrative Law Appeals, in Zavaglia v. Salem Retirement Board, held that inactive members cannot make any type of service purchase. Zavaglia is contrary to current policy of the MTRS but the decision is not yet final and thus not controlling. However, members should be aware that Zavaglia and other similar cases are being litigated and could become final in the near future, which may require the MTRS to change its policy at that time. Inactive members, or active members who foresee a period of inactivity before their retirement allowance becomes effective, are advised to complete all service purchase applications as soon as possible.
To be eligible to purchase these service types, at the time you submit your service purchase application, you must be a member in service with the MTRS (generally, you are a "member in service" if you are: actively teaching; receiving Workers' Compensation for total incapacity; on a sick leave; or, on an authorized unpaid leave of less than one year).
*** EXCEPTION: If you established membership in a Massachusetts public retirement system on or after April 2, 2012, and you had previously been a member of a Massachusetts public retirement system and taken a refund of your account, you will have one year from the date that you re-entered public service to apply and pay for your service purchase at the lower "buyback" interest rate (currently, 4.00%). After your first year of re-entry to membership, you will be subject to actuarial interest.
+ You may purchase a combined total maximum of ten years of out-of-state service (i.e., service rendered: in an out-of-state public school; before 1973 in an out-of-state nonpublic school; or, in an overseas dependent school). Additionally, in order to receive credit for your out-of-state purchases toward your retirement benefit calculation, you must—at the time of retirement—also have at least as many years of "matching" Massachusetts membership service; you may not count your same years of "matching" Massachusetts membership service toward both the out-of-state and MA nonpublic school "matching" service requirements. For additional information, see the service purchase application instructions.
^ In order to receive credit for your purchased nonpublic school teaching service in a MA publicly funded school toward your retirement benefit calculation, you must—at the time of retirement—also have at least as many years of “matching” Massachusetts membership service; you may not count your same years of "matching" Massachusetts membership service toward both the out-of-state and MA nonpublic school "matching" service requirements. For additional information, see the service purchase application instructions.