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Teachers' Retirement System (TRS)

Eligibility and Participation

The UW is not a public school as defined in state statute, and therefore initial Teachers' Retirement System (TRS) eligibility cannot generally be established at UW. However, the TRS retirement plans are available in certain limited circumstances including:

TRS Plan 3

You are a TRS Plan 3 ("TRS 3") member if:

All UW employees participate in their applicable retirement plan from the point they establish eligibility. Retirement plan participation is a condition of employment.

TRS Plan 2

TRS Plan 2 covers individuals holding positions as certificated teachers in the K-12 public school system. It is not normally available at the UW. Contact the Benefits Office if you believe you may be eligible for TRS 2.

TRS Plan 1

TRS Plan 1 ("TRS 1") is closed to new participants. You are eligible to participate in TRS 1 as a UW faculty or staff if:

Criterion Applicable to All TRS Plans

Changing positions at the UW

If you enroll in a TRS plan during your UW employment, you will have done so by signing an Irrevocable Election, since TRS is not otherwise available at UW. As such, no future retirement plan changes will be available to you at the UW. Email the UW Benefits Office at if you have questions.

When Transferring from Another Washington State Higher Education Institution

If you were participating in a Washington state public Higher Education Retirement Plan with another higher education institution (CWU, EWU, SBCTC, TESC, WSU, WWU), you may be eligible to participate in the University of Washington Retirement Plan (UWRP) instead of the Teachers' Retirement System (TRS). To be eligible for an exception to participate in the UWRP you must have:

If you believe you meet this exception criterion, email to determine your retirement plan choices.


Disclaimer: If there are any discrepancies between this document and the provisions of the UWRP Plan Document or TRS statutes, the Plan Document or statue will prevail.

Chapter 430, Laws of 2009
In calculating average final compensation under this subsection for a member of PERS plan 1, 2, or 3, the Department of Retirement Systems (DRS) shall include any compensation forgone by the member during the 2009-2011 fiscal biennium as a result of reduced work hours, voluntary leave without pay, or temporary furloughs if the reduced compensation is an integral part of the employer's expenditure reduction efforts, as certified by the employer. At retirement, certification for UW retirees will be provided by the Benefits Office directly to DRS. Neither retirees nor their departments need to provide special information to facilitate this certification. Please contact DRS directly for more information or refer to Chapter 430, Laws of 2009 as passed.