Retirement Benefits

Nearing Retirement? Do These 5 Things.

Man looking at laptop.

Take these five steps now to help put you on the path to a successful retirement.

1. Enroll in the “Planning Your Retirement” Class

This is our most comprehensive benefits education class that provides a deeper understanding of your benefits as you begin to prepare for retirement.

To enroll: Log in to myCalPERS and select the Education tab. (If you need to register for myCalPERS, or recover your username or password, visit Using myCalPERS for instructions.)

In this class, you’ll learn:

  • How your pension is calculated, and ways to increase it.
  • The payment options available upon retirement to provide for a beneficiary.
  • How to run estimates through your myCalPERS account.
  • About the CalPERS Special Power of Attorney, employer-contracted CalPERS health benefits, and much more.

2. Run a Retirement Estimate

Estimate future retirement benefits and save them to view later. Simply follow How to Create a Retirement Estimate on myCalPERS (PDF) for simple step-by-step instructions.

3. Use Our Retirement Planning Checklist

Get key steps to prepare for retirement in our Retirement Planning Checklist. Or, find a more detailed checklist in Planning Your Service Retirement (PUB 1) (PDF) and our Retirement Planning Checklist video.

4. Access These Videos

Quick Tips

  • Choosing a Retirement Date
    Here are a few things every CalPERS member should consider when choosing a retirement date.
  • Cost-of-Living Adjustment
    The Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) is a benefit that ensures your value of money at retirement keeps up with the rate of inflation.


  • Power of Attorney
    Even if you already have a power of attorney through another source, it may not address CalPERS. We cover the reasons a Special Power of Attorney is beneficial, as well as your representative’s duties and limitations.
  • Retirement Income Sources
    Planning for retirement should include knowing sources of your potential income and figuring out how they fit in your overall income strategy.
  • Social Security and Your CalPERS Pension
    If you’re eligible to receive a CalPERS pension from an employer that didn’t withhold Social Security taxes from your earnings, your Social Security benefits may be reduced.
  • Working After Retirement
    Once you retire, you may decide to return to work for a CalPERS-covered employer as a retired annuitant or reinstate from your retirement. We’ll discuss the limitations as a retired annuitant and the guidelines you must follow if you reinstate from retirement.
  • Your Retirement Estimate and Payment Options
    Learn about the recent updates and new features to the Retirement Estimate Calculator in myCalPERS. We’ll also review your retirement payment options to help make your retirement planning easier.
  • Your Online Service Retirement Application
    Skip the stamp or office visit by applying for your service retirement online. Follow along while we show you how to submit your application in your myCalPERS account.

5. Subscribe and Follow

Stay informed of upcoming CalPERS webcasts, instructor-led classes, and CalPERS Benefits Education Events by subscribing to our Member Education Bulletin and following us on social media.