MPSERS Employer News – November 2019 (Corrected on Nov. 21, 2019)

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MPSERS Employer News

November 2019 - Corrected on 11/21/2019

Get ready

Small Steps – get ready, get set

In preparation for the upcoming Small Steps campaign, a comprehensive list of employees with a Defined Contribution (DC) component was made available for review on the File Transfer Services (FTS) website. Using this list, please begin to clean up your feedback file (RIM 7.21.06: View DC Feedback File) and complete a Detail 4 termination record for each employee who you have found no longer works for you (RIM 7.21.07: DTL4 for Terminated DC/PHF Participant).

As part of the Small Steps campaign, employees in Pension Plus, Pension Plus 2, DC, and Personal Healthcare Fund (PHF) who are not contributing at least 15% to their State of Michigan 457 Plan received a mailer from Voya Financial® regarding their contribution rates. Unless the employee opts out, their contribution rate will be increased by 1% effective for the first available pay period in January 2020.

Note: The list you received earlier this month is not final. We will provide you the final comprehensive list of employees with a DC component on the View DC Feedback File near the end of December.

The table below illustrates the relation between report begin and end dates, the date you receive a percentage change on the DC Feedback file, and the report end date on which the new percentage is effective (i.e. the end date of report which must reflect the new percentage.) The dates are for illustration only.

Begin Date
End Date
Percentage Received Date Report End Date Effective Date for New Percentage
6/1/2019 6/15/2019 5/31/2019 6/15/2019
6/1/2019 6/15/2019 6/1/2019 6/30/2019
6/1/2019 6/15/2019 6/8/2019 6/30/2019
6/1/2019 6/15/2019 6/15/2019 6/30/2019

If you have questions related to the Small Steps campaign, email Employer Reporting at

Retirement Plan Guides

Help boost new hire election rates

In February 2018 ORS and the reporting units saw a big change to retirement plans, including the introduction of Pension Plus 2 and the fact that the Defined Contribution (DC) plan became the default plan. This was a big change from the old process, because you first report the new employee as Pension Plus 2, and if they default, you make adjustments retroactively to place them in the DC plan. 

More employees making elections will help reduce the amount of adjustments you need to make.

Since miAccount is now the way employees make elections, ORS has been monitoring the election process. Here are the results from February 2018 through October 2019:

  • DC Defaults: 55%
  • Elections: 45%
    • Elected DC: 20%
    • Elected Pension Plus 2: 25%

It benefits everyone to increase the number of employees making an election rather than defaulting. How can you help? Provide the new employee election materials (the Retirement Plan Election Guide and Decision Guide), and advise them how important it is to make an affirmative election.

Normal Salary Increase rate tables updated

Salary increase

We recently added rates for fiscal year 2020 to the Reporting Instruction Manual (RIM) sections that provide tables for Normal Salary Increase (NSI) rates.

Note that the NSI rate tables are provided in the RIM for informational purposes. Please continue to report all reportable compensation. It is ORS’s responsibility to calculate whether an employee may be over the limit. ORS conducts an annual wage review audit and will notify your reporting unit if adjustments are needed due to NSI. If an issue with NSI comes up when the employee has applied for retirement, ORS will notify you at that point.

As a reminder: Employees in certain job classifications are subject to NSI limits when it comes to their reportable compensation. (For the purposes of NSI limits, ORS is not concerned with an employee’s total annual earnings, only with reportable compensation as defined in the retirement act.) If an employee in one of these classifications earns more than what is allowed by the NSI tables, the amount over that limit is not reportable compensation, and adjustments will need to be made.

RIM sections 4.03.00 and 4.03.05 provide more information about NSI.

Payroll calendars during the holidays

Holiday calendar

As the winter holidays approach, please keep in mind that ORS will not change payroll calendar dates when a pay period falls on a holiday or weekend. Your payroll calendar is set in the spring for the next school fiscal year.

Employees may be paid ahead of the holiday or weekend date, but for your report header, you must use the holiday or weekend date as reflected on your payroll calendar.

If you pay employees on a day other than your pay period end date, adjust your record end date accordingly, while keeping the same report end date.

For example, if your pay period end date falls on January 1, 20xx, but you pay your employees on Dec. 30, 20xx, your report header will have a pay period end date of Jan. 1, 20xx, while records within the report will have an end date of Dec. 30, 20xx.

This is especially important for retiree earnings limits on DLT2 records and IRS limits associated with DC/PHF contributions on a DTL4 record. Be advised that records will flag if they do not match your payroll calendar, and if the record posts, the employee may receive inaccurate service credit.

Road to Retirement

Retirement workshops – not just for those you report

You may think that you’ll learn about your own retirement when the time comes. In reality, retirement will be here sooner than you think. Attending one of the presentations offered by ORS will help you be confident in your knowledge and the decisions you’ll make for your future.

ORS offers two different workshops – Planning Your Retirement and Picture Your Future – for Defined Benefit (DB) members. We add dates and locations for these workshops throughout the season on our member website, making it easy to find one that fits your schedule.

To find more information or to register for a workshop, visit the Workshops, Webinars, and E-Learning Modules  page on the Public School Employees website.

We encourage you to share this information with other employees as well.

Compensation Corner

Compensation Corner

What’s reportable on a Detail 4?
(corrected on 11/21/2019)


  • Gross earnings reported on W-2 or 1099R 
  • Annuities


  • Wages for workers' compensation (RIM 4.04.06)
  • Short-term disability (RIM 4.04.10)
  • Long-term disability (RIM 4.06.10)

In This Issue:

December 2019

Important Dates & Reminders

Nov. 28-29
Thanksgiving holiday – ORS is not open for business on these state holidays

Dec. 1
Scheduled system maintenance (Employer Reporting website unavailable)

Dec. 16
UAAL invoices available on Employer Reporting website

Christmas Eve and Christmas – ORS is not open for business on these state holidays

Dec. 31-Jan.1
New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day – ORS is not open for business on these state holidays

Recent Communications

Recent Communications

Recent RIM updates

Recent RIM updates

Helpful Tip

Helpful Tip

Reminder:  Invoices for the UAAL Rate Stabilization payment (147c) began posting to reporting units’ statements on November 15. This month’s invoice is for both November and October.

If your reporting unit receives its state aid payment within three days of the close of your pay cycle, you won’t see the invoice post until the next pay cycle statement.

If your invoice appears on the website but doesn’t open right away, try a different web browser.