Frequently Asked Questions

Can a member contribute on earnings equal to 120 days of employment and receive a full year of service credit for their leave?

No. To receive a full year of service credit a member must purchase his or her full contract. Members on a leave of absence cannot receive a full year of service credit by completing deposits on 120 days.

How is the cost to the member determined for a current fiscal year absence or leave?

The cost is based on the amount of earnings the member would have earned had they worked. The Current Leave of Absence Cost Calculator can assist in determining the cost.

We granted a leave of absence for a teacher over 10 years ago. Are we required to pay the employer contributions for this time?

Yes, any time an employer grants a leave of absence they are incurring a future liability. In this situation, the employer who granted the leave would be liable for the employer contributions.

An employee is taking a leave during the current school year. How long do they have to purchase the leave interest-free?

A leave that is purchased in the same fiscal year it occurs will not be charged interest. No interest will be charged if documentation and payment for this leave are received by STRS Ohio before June 30 of the same fiscal year.

Are employers required to administer payroll deduction plans?

Yes. Ohio law requires employers to administer payroll deduction for the purchase of STRS Ohio credit.

If the member signs up for payroll deduction and there is an associated employer cost with the type of credit being purchased, how is the employer cost handled?

If a member is purchasing service credit through payroll deduction and his or her plan did not complete by the end of our fiscal year, the employer will receive a bill in September. If a member completes his or her payroll deduction purchase any other time during the year, the employer will be billed within one week of the purchase being completed. If the employer participates in the State Foundation Program and employer payment is not made, the next certification of the State Foundation Program will be adjusted accordingly.

Can I include payments for purchase service credit on my regular biweekly payroll report?

No. While you can send the payment at the same time as your regular payroll payment, do not include the purchase service credit amounts on your regular payroll reports. The purchase service credit amounts will be reflected on the monthly purchase service credit (PSC) report completed in ESS or on the Payroll Deduction for Purchase of Service Credit Report you return with your payment and Check Remittance form if paying by check. If paying by ACH credit or wire transfer, submit an online payment remittance.

How do I know when to discontinue payroll deductions?

STRS Ohio will notify you on the purchase service credit (PSC) report approximately three months before the member’s last remittance month. You can also contact the STRS Ohio accounting department at 888‑535‑4050 with any questions or to verify final payment amounts.

An employee who is currently in a payroll deduction plan to purchase service credit is going to work for a new school. Can they continue their plan at the new school?

Yes, but the member will need to contact STRS Ohio to request a new cost statement. The member will need to take the cost statement to his or her new employer to certify and set up payroll deductions.