Life Events - Retiring from the University of Michigan:
your checklist: when you decide to retire

Notify Your Supervisor of Your Retirement
Your department must submit transactions to university records to initiate your transition from active employment status to retiree.  This is also true for retirement furloughs and phased retirement arrangements.  Departments usually want notification from you of your intent to retire in writing and with enough reasonable advance notice to plan for it.

Arrange to Pay for Your Benefits
You can have an automatic deduction taken from your checking or savings account each month to pay for your benefit premiums, or you can send in a personal check or money order.  Click here for more information on these options and deadlines for payment.

Meet with TIAA-CREF and/or Fidelity Investments
You may want to meet with a retirement planning specialist from TIAA-CREF and/or Fidelity Investments to review your income projections and income options, as well as complete forms to initiate any income payment options.  TIAA-CREF and Fidelity cannot release your income distributions or rollovers until they have confirmation of your retirement.  This is provided once your department has submitted your retirement notification to university records and it has been updated.

Request Your Retirement Checkout Kit
Call the SSC Contact Center 30 days prior to your retirement to request a Retirement Checkout Kit be mailed to your home.  The following are included in the kit:

  • A review of your benefits, associated costs, and covered, eligible dependents (if any).
  • A copy of the booklet Your Retirement Benefits
  • A form to update your life insurance beneficiary (if enrolled).
  • A form for you and any eligible dependents to enroll in Medicare Part B.
  • A form to authorize an automatic deduction from a checking or savings account to pay for your benefits.
  • A memo to pick up a U-M Retiree ID Card.
  • A pamphlet for the U-M Retirees Association

Apply for Social Security and Medicare
Visit your local Social Security Administration office, or call for an appointment, 800-772-1213 to apply for Social Security income benefits and for Medicare.  Retirees and their dependents must enroll in Medicare benefits when first eligible.  If you or a dependent who is eligible for Medicare fail to enroll when first eligible, your benefits will be drastically reduced until enrollment occurs.  U-M health plan coverage will not pay for services that would have been paid primary by Medicare if Medicare enrollment had occurred.   There may be a penalty for late Medicare enrollment of 10% a year for each year you could have been enrolled.

Pick Up Your Rec Sports Membership
The Department of Recreational Sports offers a one-year complimentary membership.  Stop by any one of the Rec Sports Business Offices approximately one month after you have retired to pick up your membership.

Update Your Address
Make sure your address is current with the university (you can update it online using Self Service in Wolverine Access).  It is also important to update your address with your health plan, TIAA-CREF and Fidelity Investments.

Pick Up Your Retiree Parking Permit
Retirees from the Ann Arbor campus are eligible for a free After Hours permit that authorizes parking in Blue, Yellow and Orange lots after 3:00 PM on weekdays and weekends but not for athletic events parking.  U-M Flint and U-M Dearborn offer parking permits to their retirees as well.

Consider Joining the U-M Retirees Association
All university retirees and their spouses are eligible to join the Retirees Association.  Membership during the first year is complimentary, after which annual dues are required for membership.  For more information contact: or call 734-763-7385

Vacation/PTO Payout
Any unused vacation/PTO accrual will be cashed out and the Basic Retirement Plan 5% employee and 10% university contributions are provided on these amounts.  A vacation / PTO accrual payment is typically issued as a separate check; any SRA and 457(b) contributions in effect are not taken from these payments.

Get Your Retiree ID Card
Exchange your staff ID card for a retiree ID card once you retire; this gains you access to university facilities.  The authorization for this card is included in your Retirement Checkout Kit.