Retirement Timeline

Not all of the information below will apply to all retirees. There are certain benefits that are only available to Official Retirees of Grand Valley State University. An Official Retiree is a benefit eligible faculty/staff member who was hired prior to January 1, 2014 and whose years of service at GVSU and age total a minimum of 75 at the time of retirement. Affiliate Faculty are not eligible for the medical related benefits. Visiting Faculty are not eligible for Official Retiree status. Considerations that are only applicable to Official Retirees are clearly stated as such.

1-3 Years Before Retirement

  • Make sure you can locate your birth certificate, Social Security card, and marriage license. If you can not locate your copies order new ones. You will need these documents when you apply for Social Security retirement benefits.
  • Visit the Social Security Office or use the tools online at to review your Social Security options, estimate your Social Security income, and see how different retirement dates could affect your Social Security income.
  • Meet with a representative from Fidelity Investments and/or TIAA or with your personal financial advisor to get an estimate of your retirement income and review your risk level.
    • Visit the Events Page to find out when representatives from Fidelity and TIAA will be available.
  • You can contact Encompass, our Employee Assistance Program, at 1-800-788-8630 to order a free copy of How To Retire Happy.

2-3 Months Before Retirement

  • Faculty should give no less than three months notice before retiring (see Faculty Handbook Resignation Policy 4.2.12)
  • Contact the Social Security Administration to apply for income benefits. If you will be 65 or older at retirement, you will also need to contact the SSA to enroll in Medicare Part A, Part B, and Part D. You can apply online or by visiting a Social Security office.
  • Research and enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan if you will be over the age of 65 when retiring.
  • Schedule a meeting with a Fidelity Investments and/or TIAA representative to review your income projections and income options. Be sure to complete any forms that are required to initiate any income payment options.
  • If you have retirement accounts outside of the GVSU Retirement Plans, you should consult with your financial advisor to discuss your income options.
  • Review your estate plan with your attorney. Make certain that your will, trust, and beneficiaries are up to date.
  • If you are a participant in the MGS or PSS Retirement Plan A (Pension), complete the Retirement Application in the Anytime Events system.

1 Month Before Retirement

  • Provide an official retirement letter to your department and the Human Resources office.
  • You will receive a Retirement Packet from the Benefits Office. Be sure to complete and return any necessary forms.
  • Review your auto insurance policy with your agent. You may qualify for a reduction in your premium due to your retirement. There may also be changes in Coordination of Coverage with your medical plan.
  • Review and update your Long Term Care Insurance Policy if applicable. Communicate your wishes to your family in the event a long term care stay becomes a reality.
  • If you are an Official Retiree, you should go to Public Safety before your last day to switch out your Faculty/Staff Parking Permit to a Retiree Permit.
  • If you are an Official Retiree, you should go to the Human Resources Office to get an Official Retiree Identification Card.
  • Turn in any GVSU property you may have in to your department (keys, computers, etc.).

During Retirement

  • If you are an Official Retiree under the age of 65 and will be enrolling in the GVSU Retiree Medical Plan, you will be receiving billing information from iSolved Benefit Services. Send your premiums to iSolved Benefit Services.
  • If you are an Official Retiree, your coverage under the GVSU Retiree Medical Plan will end at the age of 65 and Medicare will become your primary insurance provider. If your spouse or household member is covered under the GVSU Retiree Medical Plan their coverage will end when they turn 65 and Medicare will become their primary insurance provider. We suggest that you secure a Medicare Supplement policy. If you are an Official Retiree, GVSU may reimburse a portion of the premium for your Medicare Supplement policy.
  • Please contact the GVSU Benefits Office, Fidelity Investments, TIAA, Social Security, and Medicare if you have any change in the following:
    • New Address
    • Death of a spouse
    • Divorce
    • Marriage
  • Keep your beneficiaries up-to-date if your circumstances change.
  • If you are an Official Retiree over the age of 65, please complete and return the Medicare Supplement Reimbursement Form you will receive from the Benefits Office each November.
  • Official Retirees that participate in the CVS/Caremark Prescription Discount Program will receive renewal information each summer. Complete the renewal form and send it back to the Benefits Office with the required payment.

Page last modified September 2, 2021