Changing Employment Status


Switching Between Part Time and Full Time

Changing From Part-Time, Seasonal, Intermittent, or Project Contract Status to Full-Time Permanent Status

Employees who change to full-time permanent status become eligible for ACERA membership. Upon becoming eligible, your employer’s payroll clerk or Human Resources department will provide you with an ACERA New member Enrollment Questionnaire.You need to complete and return this form to your employer.The form provides ACERA with the information needed to begin your membership.

Once you establish your membership, you may decide you wish to purchase service credit to obtain credit for your period(s) of part-time or ineligible status service.

Changing From Full-Time Permanent to Part-Time, Seasonal, Intermittent, or Project status

During the course of your ACERA-covered employment, your job status may change from full-time permanent to part-time, seasonal, intermittent, or project status. In such an event you would remain a contributing ACERA member. Your employee contributions continue and you continue to earn ACERA service credit for your hours worked. You cannot discontinue membership unless you terminate employment.

Moving From One Participating Employer to Another

In general, your move from one participating employer to another (such as from Alameda County to Alameda Health System) should be seamless if there is no break in employment. In most cases, no action on your part is required. However, in the event you receive an ACERA Termination Election of Membership Request Form. You should follow these steps:

  • If no break in service (no lapse days), contact your new employer; let them know you are already an ACERA member. You will not be required to complete an ACERA New member Enrollment Questionnaire.
  • Please note, your new employer may not withhold your employee contribution for the first pay period. If this occurs contact ACERA member Services for information on making up your missed contribution to ensure you do not lose credit for that service.

Taking a Job With Another Public Employer

In the event you terminate your ACERA-covered employment and become a member of another pension system in California by accepting a position with another public employer (e.g., with the State of California), within 180 days of termination of your ACERA covered employment you may be eligible to establish a reciprocal agreement between ACERA and your new employer’s retirement system.

You will need to complete and return an ACERA Termination Election of Membership Request Form to ACERA. When completing the form, be sure to complete these sections:

  • Elect to defer your membership in Section A
  • Elect to establish reciprocity in Section B, and note the name of your new employer’s retirement system


  • Elect to withdraw funds. If you do so, you waive your rights to future benefits and establishing reciprocity

After returning your form to ACERA, contact your new employer for information regarding any further action you may need to take to establish reciprocity.

You are not eligible for reciprocity if your ACERA covered employment and your new employment overlap (i.e., vacation or leave time taken with ACERA covered employment and simultaneous new employment).

Changing Between General and Safety Membership

If you change membership types during the course of your ACERA-covered employment—for example, moving from a general member position to a safety member position—contact us to ensure the date of this change is accurately processed.

When you retire, your benefit under both membership types will be calculated separately. The appropriate formula will be used for your general member service and the appropriate formula will be used for safety member service. Note that all service will count toward vesting and retirement eligibility. Your ACERA member entry date will not change if there is no break in your service. 

Returning to Work From Medical Leave, State Disability Insurance Leave, or Military Leave

If you take an unpaid medical leave, state disability insurance leave, or military leave and subsequently return to work, you have the option to buy that period as service credit once you return from the leave. For the medical leave and state disability insurance leave, you can do this for periods of up to 12 consecutive months before your next compensation was received. Other types of unpaid leave are not eligible for service credit purchase. Other rules and restrictions apply, so please review our Purchasing and Redepositing Service Credit page for all of the information including instructions on how to request a service credit purchase.

You Will Forfeit Some or All of Your Pension if You’re Convicted of a Felony Arising Out of Your Work

For details, see ACERA’s Felony Forfeiture Policy.