Social Media Spreads False Information About STRS Ohio Benefits

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A group on social media claims that when active STRS Ohio members retire, they receive only 80 cents of every dollar they contribute to their pension.

This is patently false. Here are the facts:

STRS Ohio retirees in the Defined Benefit Plan receive benefits equal to their contributions within two to three years of retirement.

And whether a teacher in the Defined Benefit Plan works for a day, month or year, they receive every penny back — plus interest — that they contribute to their STRS Ohio account. That’s correct — they never lose a cent of what they contribute.

Whenever their teaching career ends, this money is available for withdrawal or, if eligible, a retirement benefit. The average career teacher in the Defined Benefit Plan receives a total benefit during their retirement many times larger than what they contribute to their STRS Ohio pension. Plus, they never outlive this benefit. Those who leave teaching prior to retirement may request a refund of all their contributions with interest — often with an additional 50% match.

Members may log on to their Online Personal Account to see:

  • Their account withdrawal value. This reflects contributions plus interest and a 50% matching amount for those with at least five years of service in the Defined Benefit Plan.

  • Projected retirement benefits for both early and normal retirement.

Members with additional questions should call 888-227-7877 (toll-free), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. They may also email using the contact us form.