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Division of Human Resources

Retirement Benefits

Through the South Carolina Public Employee Benefit Authority (PEBA) and other outside vendors, we offer a comprehensive retirement program. 

Open enrollment for State ORP

The State Optional Retirement Program (State ORP) open enrollment period is in progress and will run through Monday, March 1, 2021. Changes made during this time will be effective April 1, 2021.


State Retirement Benefits 

As a condition of employment, eligible employees of the University of South Carolina are required to become members of the South Carolina Retirement System (SCRS) or the Police Officers Retirement System (PORS), as applicable, unless the State Optional Retirement Program (State ORP) is elected within 30 days of initial eligibility.

Certain employees may opt out of state retirement by electing non-membership; however, the election must be exercised within 30 days of initial eligibility. If a timely election is not exercised, the employee will be automatically enrolled into the applicable retirement system (SCRS or PORS), which is irrevocable. Generally, employees with an active SCRS account cannot elect State ORP or non-membership. 

Active employees who participate in a PEBA-administered retirement plan may take advantage of PEBA’s voluntary, supplemental retirement savings program – the South Carolina Deferred Compensation Program.

Defined Benefits Plans

Defined Contribution Plan

Voluntary Supplemental Retirement Savings Program

All paid employees, except students are eligible for state retirement benefits.

If you are eligible to switch from State ORP to SCRS during retirement open enrollment (Jan 1 – Mar 1), your SCRS membership effective date will be April 1 of that same year.

Retirement Plan Member Contribution Rate
SCRS and State ORP 9.00% of earnable compensation
PORS 9.75% of earnable compensation

UofSC Supplemental Retirement Benefits

The 403(b) Program is sponsored by the University of South Carolina and has many providers to meet your individual retirement goals.

To make changes or to stop an existing contribution, please log in to Employee Self Service.

New participants must also login to Employee Self Service to start a contribution, however, you will also need to contact the annuity provider [pdf] directly to complete paperwork to allocate investment funds and designate a beneficiary, etc. If you fail to contact the annuity provider, your account will not be setup appropriately and this could cause issues with contributions being returned to UofSC or, in some cases, applied to a designated default account depending on the vendor. 

If you have any questions regarding enrollments in a 403(b) plan, please contact the Benefits Office at 803-777-6650.

For 403(b) plan distributions/rollovers, loans, or hardship withdrawals, please contact the Payroll Office at 803-777-4227.

Enroll and Make Changes

Employees are only allowed to enroll or make changes to retirement benefits during specific time periods throughout the year. Learn more about the enrollment process and some exceptions that may apply. 


Helpful Resources

Use the resources listed below to get quick access to more information about your retirement benefits.

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