Optional Retirement Program (ORP) for Former Employees

You may use Optional Retirement Program (ORP) service credit to help you meet the Rule of 80 or at age 65 toward the 10-year requirement for retiree insurance. If you refunded your ORP account, you can’t use the time towards insurance eligibility. You must have an ORP account to maintain your retiree insurance eligibility.

  • Governed by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
  • Earned at institutions of higher education.
  • Available to employees who choose ORP instead of TRS.
  • Does not increase your ERS annuity amount if you are using your ORP service toward retirement eligibility.
  • Helps you meet retirement eligibility sooner but may not count towards retiree insurance eligibility if it is not GBP eligible service credit. 

Higher education employees who are participating in the ORP can’t buy back refunded ERS service without being re-employed by a state agency under ERS (not TRS).

Certain rules apply if you plan to use ORP service credit to retire under ERS. Contact ERS to certify your ORP service and we’ll send you the form to complete.