Illinois Statutes Chapter 40. Pensions § 5/15-158.2. Self-managed plan
Welcome to FindLaw's Cases & Codes, a free source of state and federal court opinions, state laws, and the United States Code. For more information about the legal concepts addressed by these cases and statutes, visit FindLaw's Learn About the Law.
Search Illinois Statutes
Search by Keyword or Citation
§ 15-158.2. Self-managed plan.
(a) Purpose. The General Assembly finds that it is important for colleges and universities to be able to attract and retain the most qualified employees and that in order to attract and retain these employees, colleges and universities should have the flexibility to provide a defined contribution plan as an alternative for eligible employees who elect not to participate in a defined benefit retirement program provided under this Article. Accordingly, the State Universities Retirement System is hereby authorized to establish and administer a self-managed plan, which shall offer participating employees the opportunity to accumulate assets for retirement through a combination of employee and employer contributions that may be invested in mutual funds, collective investment funds, or other investment products and used to purchase annuity contracts, either fixed or variable or a combination thereof. The plan must be qualified under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. 1
(b) Adoption by employers. Each employer subject to this Article may elect to adopt the self-managed plan established under this Section; this election is irrevocable. An employer's election to adopt the self-managed plan makes available to the eligible employees of that employer the elections described in Section 15-134.5.
The State Universities Retirement System shall be the plan sponsor for the self-managed plan and shall prepare a plan document and prescribe such rules and procedures as are considered necessary or desirable for the administration of the self-managed plan. Consistent with its fiduciary duty to the participants and beneficiaries of the self-managed plan, the Board of Trustees of the System may delegate aspects of plan administration as it sees fit to companies authorized to do business in this State, to the employers, or to a combination of both.
(c) Selection of service providers and funding vehicles. The System, in consultation with the employers, shall solicit proposals to provide administrative services and funding vehicles for the self-managed plan from insurance and annuity companies and mutual fund companies, banks, trust companies, or other financial institutions authorized to do business in this State. In reviewing the proposals received and approving and contracting with no fewer than 2 and no more than 7 companies, the Board of Trustees of the System shall consider, among other things, the following criteria:
(1) the nature and extent of the benefits that would be provided to the participants;
(2) the reasonableness of the benefits in relation to the premium charged;
(3) the suitability of the benefits to the needs and interests of the participating employees and the employer;
(4) the ability of the company to provide benefits under the contract and the financial stability of the company; and
(5) the efficacy of the contract in the recruitment and retention of employees.
The System, in consultation with the employers, shall periodically review each approved company. A company may continue to provide administrative services and funding vehicles for the self-managed plan only so long as it continues to be an approved company under contract with the Board.
(d) Employee Direction. Employees who are participating in the program must be allowed to direct the transfer of their account balances among the various investment options offered, subject to applicable contractual provisions. The participant shall not be deemed a fiduciary by reason of providing such investment direction. A person who is a fiduciary shall not be liable for any loss resulting from such investment direction and shall not be deemed to have breached any fiduciary duty by acting in accordance with that direction. The System shall provide advance notice to the participant of the participant's obligation to direct the investment of employee and employer contributions into one or more investment funds selected by the System at the time he or she makes his or her initial retirement plan selection. If a participant fails to direct the investment of employee and employer contributions into the various investment options offered to the participant when making his or her initial retirement election choice, that failure shall require the System to invest the employee and employer contributions in a default investment fund on behalf of the participant, and the investment shall be deemed to have been made at the participant's investment direction. The participant has the right to transfer account balances out of the default investment fund during time periods designated by the System. Neither the System nor the employer guarantees any of the investments in the employee's account balances.
(e) Participation. An employee eligible to participate in the self-managed plan must make a written election in accordance with the provisions of Section 15-134.5 and the procedures established by the System. Participation in the self-managed plan by an electing employee shall begin on the first day of the first pay period following the later of the date the employee's election is filed with the System or the effective date as of which the employee's employer begins to offer participation in the self-managed plan. Employers may not make the self-managed plan available earlier than January 1, 1998. An employee's participation in any other retirement program administered by the System under this Article shall terminate on the date that participation in the self-managed plan begins.
An employee who has elected to participate in the self-managed plan under this Section must continue participation while employed in an eligible position, and may not participate in any other retirement program administered by the System under this Article while employed by that employer or any other employer that has adopted the self-managed plan, unless the self-managed plan is terminated in accordance with subsection (i).
Notwithstanding any other provision of this Article, a Tier 2 member shall have the option to enroll in the self-managed plan.
Participation in the self-managed plan under this Section shall constitute membership in the State Universities Retirement System.
A participant under this Section shall be entitled to the benefits of Article 20 of this Code. 2
(f) Establishment of Initial Account Balance. If at the time an employee elects to participate in the self-managed plan he or she has rights and credits in the System due to previous participation in the traditional benefit package, the System shall establish for the employee an opening account balance in the self-managed plan, equal to the amount of contribution refund that the employee would be eligible to receive under Section 15-154 if the employee terminated employment on that date and elected a refund of contributions, except that this hypothetical refund shall include interest at the effective rate for the respective years. The System shall transfer assets from the defined benefit retirement program to the self-managed plan, as a tax free transfer in accordance with Internal Revenue Service guidelines, for purposes of funding the employee's opening account balance.
(g) No Duplication of Service Credit. Notwithstanding any other provision of this Article, an employee may not purchase or receive service or service credit applicable to any other retirement program administered by the System under this Article for any period during which the employee was a participant in the self-managed plan established under this Section.
(h) Contributions. The self-managed plan shall be funded by contributions from employees participating in the self-managed plan and employer contributions as provided in this Section.
The contribution rate for employees participating in the self-managed plan under this Section shall be equal to the employee contribution rate for other participants in the System, as provided in Section 15-157. This required contribution shall be made as an “employer pick-up” under Section 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 3 or any successor Section thereof. Any employee participating in the System's traditional benefit package prior to his or her election to participate in the self-managed plan shall continue to have the employer pick up the contributions required under Section 15-157. However, the amounts picked up after the election of the self-managed plan shall be remitted to and treated as assets of the self-managed plan. In no event shall an employee have an option of receiving these amounts in cash. Employees may make additional contributions to the self-managed plan in accordance with procedures prescribed by the System, to the extent permitted under rules prescribed by the System.
The program shall provide for employer contributions to be credited to each self-managed plan participant at a rate of 7.6% of the participating employee's salary, less the amount used by the System to provide disability benefits for the employee. The amounts so credited shall be paid into the participant's self-managed plan accounts in a manner to be prescribed by the System.
An amount of employer contribution, not exceeding 1% of the participating employee's salary, shall be used for the purpose of providing the disability benefits of the System to the employee. Prior to the beginning of each plan year under the self-managed plan, the Board of Trustees shall determine, as a percentage of salary, the amount of employer contributions to be allocated during that plan year for providing disability benefits for employees in the self-managed plan.
The State of Illinois shall make contributions by appropriations to the System of the employer contributions required for employees who participate in the self-managed plan under this Section. The amount required shall be certified by the Board of Trustees of the System and paid by the State in accordance with Section 15-165. The System shall not be obligated to remit the required employer contributions to any of the insurance and annuity companies, mutual fund companies, banks, trust companies, financial institutions, or other sponsors of any of the funding vehicles offered under the self-managed plan until it has received the required employer contributions from the State. In the event of a deficiency in the amount of State contributions, the System shall implement those procedures described in subsection (c) of Section 15-165 to obtain the required funding from the General Revenue Fund.
(i) Termination. The self-managed plan authorized under this Section may be terminated by the System, subject to the terms of any relevant contracts, and the System shall have no obligation to reestablish the self-managed plan under this Section. This Section does not create a right to continued participation in any self-managed plan set up by the System under this Section. If the self-managed plan is terminated, the participants shall have the right to participate in one of the other retirement programs offered by the System and receive service credit in such other retirement program for any years of employment following the termination.
(j) Vesting; Withdrawal; Return to Service. A participant in the self-managed plan becomes vested in the employer contributions credited to his or her accounts in the self-managed plan on the earliest to occur of the following: (1) completion of 5 years of service with an employer described in Section 15-106; (2) the death of the participating employee while employed by an employer described in Section 15-106, if the participant has completed at least 1 1/2 years of service; or (3) the participant's election to retire and apply the reciprocal provisions of Article 20 of this Code.
A participant in the self-managed plan who receives a distribution of his or her vested amounts from the self-managed plan while not yet eligible for retirement under this Article (and Article 20, if applicable) shall forfeit all service credit and accrued rights in the System; if subsequently re-employed, the participant shall be considered a new employee. If a former participant again becomes a participating employee (or becomes employed by a participating system under Article 20 of this Code) and continues as such for at least 2 years, all such rights, service credits, and previous status as a participant shall be restored upon repayment of the amount of the distribution, without interest.
(k) Benefit amounts. If an employee who is vested in employer contributions terminates employment, the employee shall be entitled to a benefit which is based on the account values attributable to both employer and employee contributions and any investment return thereon.
If an employee who is not vested in employer contributions terminates employment, the employee shall be entitled to a benefit based solely on the account values attributable to the employee's contributions and any investment return thereon, and the employer contributions and any investment return thereon shall be forfeited. Any employer contributions which are forfeited shall be held in escrow by the company investing those contributions and shall be used as directed by the System for future allocations of employer contributions or for the restoration of amounts previously forfeited by former participants who again become participating employees.
Cite this article: FindLaw.com - Illinois Statutes Chapter 40. Pensions § 5/15-158.2. Self-managed plan - last updated January 01, 2022 | https://codes.findlaw.com/il/chapter-40-pensions/il-st-sect-40-5-15-158-2.html
FindLaw Codes may not reflect the most recent version of the law in your jurisdiction. Please verify the status of the code you are researching with the state legislature or via Westlaw before relying on it for your legal needs.
Was this helpful?