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10 Sep 2019
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TRS Supplemental Payments Are Arriving

Members of the Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) are reporting that the supplemental payments (13thchecks) from the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) are showing up in their bank accounts!

TRTA is proud of the work its members put in during the legislative session to create this great accomplishment.

The supplemental payment is only half of the good news, as the funding that retirees procured during the session are leading to a healthier, sustainable pension fund going into the future.

In 2019, TRTA’s advocacy put $589 million directly into the pocketbooks of retirees via this 13th check. In total, TRTA secured an additional $1.344 BILLION for TRS retirees and pre–retirees this past legislative session! If you haven’t already, be sure to join our organization. Also, be sure to encourage your friends and fellow educators to do so too. It’s only through a strong membership that we can attain results.

Additionally, if you’re on Facebook or Twitter, be sure to contact your legislators and let them know that you’ve received your check. You can thank them and let them know how you’re planning to spend it.

We have received some feedback from TRTA members who are receiving their letters from TRS that the letter indicates the taxes being withheld from the supplemental payment are zero. Many TRTA members have asked TRTA what this means and what they should do regarding tax withholding for this extra payment, asking if they should they set aside some funds to pay for those taxes at a later date.

The answer is that it will depend upon each individual’s circumstance, income and withholding. However, our members should know that this supplemental payment is considered income and will be taxed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at the end of the year. As a result, if TRS has not withheld taxes for that individual, it may require he or she to pay taxes later on. Retirees should consult with their financial advisor for any questions they may have about taxable income.

TRTA contacted TRS for an explanation, which appears in full below.

TRS Statement Regarding Tax Withholdings for the Supplemental Payment:

“We’ve been receiving some calls regarding the 13th check and tax withholding. Eligible annuitants have been receiving their notification letters of the 13th check that is on schedule to be issued September 10th– those with direct deposit will likely receive that day. Others will be mailed.

The supplemental payment is taxable by the IRS, and TRS withheld taxes from the supplemental payment in accordance with IRS rules. Therefore, TRS withheld income tax at the 2019 default rate, which is married with three allowances.

However, under federal law because the payments issued by TRS were less than $2033, there is no withholding required under the default withholding rate for payments issued to U.S. citizens or resident aliens. For payments to non-resident aliens, TRS withheld income at the required rate of 30% or according a tax treaty exemption, if the member provided a valid form W-8BEN to TRS.

TRS applied the default-withholding rate in an effort to get 13th checks issued to its members as quickly as possible and to comply with Senate Bill 12. Withholding at a default rate helped us accomplish that goal.

More information can be found by clicking this link.”

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05 Sep 2019
0

Join the TRTA Fall Bring a Friend Contest and You Could Win $100!

The Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) is excited to share its Fall Bring a Friend contest, where you and a friend could each win $100!

Current TRTA members can get a friend or colleague to join TRTA for the first time and both the current and new member will be entered to win a $100 gift card. If you win, your friend wins too! In total, three pairs of TRTA friends will win and there’s $600 up for grabs! The contest continues through November 15, 2019.

Read all the details and learn how to submit a contest entry here!

Tell Your Friends about TRTA!

This year, TRTA is focused on reaching 100,000 members. We are very close to our goal with a current membership of more than 82,000! The more members we have, the more influence we have as an advocacy group as we lobby the Texas Legislature and Congress.

The best ambassadors for TRTA are current members of our great organization. When you bring a friend to TRTA, the entire organization benefits!

Tell your friends TRTA fights every day to protect the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) pension fund and TRS-Care health insurance plan and working to repeal the unfair federal Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP)!

Tell your friends TRTA worked with the Texas Legislature this year to help make the pension fund sound and get retirees a thirteenth check, putting $589 million directly into retirees’ pocketbooks!

Tell your friends we need their help to continue the fight and ensure the security of retirement benefits for them and their family members in the next generation who are also teachers!

Contest Eligibility 

To be eligible for the drawing, you, the current member, must be sure your state dues for the 2019-2020 membership year are paid. Your friend must be a new TRTA member (your friend either has never been a member of TRTA before or has not been a member within the past three years) and must join TRTA between August 15, 2019 and November 15, 2019.

You must send a photo of the two of you posing together to info@trta.org by November 15, 2019 (see details at this link). After your information and your friend’s information has been verified by TRTA, you and your friend will be entered to win a $100 gift card.

All TRTA members are eligible to participate in the contest. You may be a member of a local unit or an at-large or associate member and still enter!

Join the TRTA 100K Challenge and Bring a Friend to TRTA Today! Be sure to use our hashtags on Facebook and Twitter: #TRTA100K #100KSTRONG #100KCHALLENGE #BRINGAFRIENDTOTRTA

Thank You

Thank you for your membership to TRTA and for being a strong advocate for retirees, present and future! TRTA will never stop working for retired educators in Texas, and we hope you and your retired friends will always be by our side as we continue to fight for retirement security for all members of TRS.

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03 Sep 2019
0

TRS Retirees to Receive 13th Check by Mid-September

Members of the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) who retired on or before December 31, 2018 are set to receive a supplemental payment—also known as a 13th check—by mid-September 2019.

The Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) worked during the 86thLegislative Session with legislators on both sides of the aisle to establish a long-term funding plan for the TRS pension fund, which also allowed TRS to issue a 13th check to most retirees of up to $2,000. The supplemental payments will be in an amount equal to your August 2019 gross annuity payment or $2,000, whichever is less.

According to TRS, the supplemental payment will be issued by mid-September 2019 and will be delivered the same address or account as a retiree’s current annuity payment. If you normally receive your payments through direct deposit, your payment will be deposited to your account on record.

The supplemental payment is fully taxable. TRS withheld taxes from your supplemental payment in accordance with IRS rules. If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien, then TRS withheld income tax at the 2019 default rate (married with three allowances). If you are a non-resident alien, then TRS withheld income tax at the required rate of 30 percent or according to a tax treaty exemption, if you have provided a valid Form W-8BEN to TRS.

If you receive other payments from TRS and they are affected by this legislation, TRS will send you a separate notification. If you have any questions regarding your supplemental payment, please contact TRS toll-free at 1.800.223.8778.

In 2019, TRTA’s advocacy put $589 million directly into the pocketbooks of retirees via this 13th check. In total, TRTA secured an additional $1.344 BILLION for TRS retirees and pre–retirees this past legislative session!

Thank You

It’s because of the hard work and dedication of our members, working together through strong grassroots advocacy, that TRTA is able to be successful in the Texas Legislature.

Thank you for your membership with TRTA and for being a strong advocate for retirees, present and future! TRTA will never stop working for retired educators in Texas, and we hope you will always be by our side as we continue to fight for retirement security for all members of TRS.

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