FICA Alternative Retirement Plan (FARP)
A new retirement plan, the FICA Alternative Retirement Plan (FARP), was established effective December 15, 2013, for most part-time, seasonal, and temporary employees. This retirement plan replaces participation in social security. Employees will continue to contribute 1.45% of wages for Medicare which is matched.
The FARP plan is mandatory for employees hired after July 1, 2013, who do not participate in the Employees’ Retirement System of RI, or a 403(b) Alternative Retirement Plan due to their ineligibility for benefits. Eligible employees will be automatically enrolled and will begin their pre-tax contributions of 7.5% of wages beginning with the January 3, 2014 paycheck.
Upon enrollment, TIAA-CREF, the plan administrator, will send participants a Welcome Kit. Contributions will be invested in the age-appropriate Vanguard Target Retirement Trust and the employee’s estate will be set up as the beneficiary. However, employees will have the option to update future investment choices and beneficiary information.
Employees can learn about the FARP Plan, investment choices, access retirement planning tools, and make transactions by going on-line to www.tiaa.cref.org/ri, choosing the “FICA Alternative Retirement Plan”, and selecting the “Plans and Investments” tab.
Employees may also speak with a TIAA-CREF consultant by calling (800)897-1026, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Questions about Social Security should be directed to the local Social Security office a 1-877-402-0808.