Preparing for Retirement

Retirement planning requires an understanding of the retirement system and the benefit options available to you. It's never too early to learn about all the choices you will need to make and the implications of those choices.

We encourage you to:

  • Become familiar with all the information on this page,
  • Begin planning for retirement three to five years before you anticipate terminating all TRS employment, and
  • Use our Retirement Timeline checklist when you're about two years out.

TRS Retirement Preparation Workshops

You can learn a lot more about the retirement process by attending TRS's Ready, Set, Retire workshop. Workshops are conducted by our experienced TRS Benefits staff. Workshops are offered each fall in various communities around Montana.

Click here to view the schedule of upcoming Ready, Set, Retire workshops or to view the presentation.

Annual Statement of Account

In the fall of each year, you will receive an Annual Statement of Account that provides information on your accumulated contributions, accumulated interest, and total amount in your account. The statement also provides information on your accumulated creditable service for the fiscal year ending on June 30.

If you have an online account, you can access your most recent annual statement from the My TRS online account system.

Click here to log in to My TRS or create a My TRS online account.

Estimate of Benefits

TRS provides an estimate of benefits as a service to our members. If you have an online account, you can obtain an unofficial estimate of benefits from the My TRS online account system.

Click here to log in to My TRS or create a My TRS online account.

If you would like TRS to prepare an offical Estimate of Benefits for you, please call our office at (406) 444-3134. We will calculate your estimated benefit amount under all the available retirement benefit options, as well as the three termination pay options.

Any member—full time, part time, or hourly—may contact TRS to request an estimate of benefits. Our staff can either mail the Request for an Estimate of Benefits Form 112 to the member, or the member can print Form 112 and mail it to the TRS office:

    • Montana Teachers' Retirement
    • P.O. Box 200139
    • Helena, MT, 59620-0139

Purchase of Service

If you are eligible to purchase service with TRS, you should contact our office as early in your career as possible. The service purchase must be completed before TRS processes your application for retirement. Be sure to allow adequate time to consider the payment options for purchasing service. Click here for an overview of the types of service available for purchase.

Learn More to Help You Prepare for Retirement

  • Print our Retirement Timeline checklist. This handy tool shows all the steps you should take starting 24 months before your anticipated retirement date.
  • Review TRS Fact Sheets on retirement-related topics, including Service Purchase, Working After Retirement, 150 Day Break in Service Requirement, Working as an Independent Contractor, Volunteer Service, and more.
  • Watch TRS Advisor videos on topics such as My TRS, Termination of Employment, and Working Retirees.

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