Do I have to meet with a counselor before I can retire?
No, you are not required to meet with a counselor. Using the online members portal, you can generate your own benefit estimates, and you can apply for retirement benefits or apply to enroll in the DROP. You can also request that we send you the necessary forms to file a paper application, which you can complete and return by postal mail.
Why would I meet with a counselor?
Many members choose to visit with one of our trained counselors at least once before completing and filing their application for retirement benefits. If you are within three to six months of your anticipated retirement date, here are three common reasons for meeting with a counselor:
- You have never received an estimate of benefits and would like a counselor to prepare one (this may take some time if you haven't requested the estimate in advance.
- You have received a benefit estimate by mail or produced one yourself through the portal and have questions about it.
- You disagree with the length of service you have earned according to APERS or your employers' records.
If a member plans to purchase military or National Guard service before retirement, he or she should mail a copy of the DD-214, NGB-22, or other appropriate discharge document and receive a cost to purchase the service credit BEFORE making an appointment to visit with an APERS counselor.
Do I need an appointment
Yes, if you want to meet with an APERS counselor, you will need to make an appointment by calling APERS at (501) 682-7800 in Pulaski County or toll free at (800) 682-7377. You may also request that we prepare and send you an estimate of your retirement benefits in advance of the meeting.
What should I bring to a meeting with a counselor?
You should bring a copy of your birth certificate and your spouse’s birth certificate to your meeting with an APERS counselor. If you have married or remarried since joining APERS, we will also need your spouse's Social Security number and a copy of your current marriage license. You should also have available the name, mailing address, and date of birth for the person or persons you wish to name as your beneficiary for DROP enrollment, service purchases, and employee contributions. We will also need a voided check or deposit slip for the bank or financial institution account you wish to use for the direct deposit of your monthly benefit payments. You do not have to bring in payroll records; in most cases we already have the needed information in your APERS records
When you call for an appointment, we must have an anticipated date of retirement to compute a benefit estimate. However, the date that you give for estimate purposes is not binding.
What can I expect at a meeting?
First, you are welcome to park for free in our valet parking deck, located on the West side of the Union Plaza building on Louisiana between 4th street and W. Capital. Remember to have our receptionist validate your ticket before you leave.
During a visit, an APERS counselor will answer any questions you have about your APERS retirement benefits and explain what your benefit will be at retirement. We will also verify that we have the correct information about you on file. Please be aware that APERS counselors are only prepared to discuss your APERS retirement benefits and to provide an estimate of your gross retirement benefits. We do not advise you on tax questions, insurance information, or general retirement and estate planning issues. These questions should be referred to appropriate professionals.
If you have service in another state-sponsored or private retirement plan, you will have to contact that plan’s representative directly for information about those benefits. If you bring military discharge documents or other completed purchase forms to the meeting, we will mail a cost to purchase service after the visit.