What is EFT?
E-F-T stands for Electronic Fund Transfer. This service enables TRS retirees to have their monthly benefit payments (and other distributions) electronically forwarded to their checking or savings account. In-service members who are paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit may choose EFT for their QPP and TDA loans and TDA direct withdrawals. EFT allows members' accounts to be credited on the payment date and safeguards against delayed, lost, or stolen checks.
How does EFT work?
By the last day of every month, the City of New York will transmit your payment to your financial institution for deposit in your designated account. Under the EFT system, you will no longer receive a check stub, but you will receive an EFT Quarterly Statement detailing your monthly payments. In addition, you will be able to view payment details each month after logging on to our website.
The monthly transactions will also appear on statements from your financial institution. (Note that statements from your financial institution will reflect the date a payment was credited, whereas TRS statements will reflect the date a payment was disbursed.)
Is EFT available for payments other than retirement benefits?
EFT is available for other payments, as noted below.
If you are an in-service member paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit, you may elect to receive QPP loans or QPP direct withdrawals via EFT in the same account where you receive your pay. You would automatically receive a TDA loan or TDA direct withdrawal via EFT, unless you elect to receive these distributions by check.
If you are a retiree with TDA Deferral status and you are receiving your retirement allowance via EFT, you would automatically receive a TDA loan and TDA direct withdrawal via EFT in the same account where you receive your benefit payments, unless you elect to receive these distributions by check. You would automatically receive a Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) via EFT.
How can I initiate EFT at retirement?
If you are currently paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit for work in a position that entitles you to TRS membership: You will be automatically enrolled to receive your monthly benefit payments (including advance payments) via EFT. You do not need to do anything; these payments will be automatically deposited in your account via EFT. However, if you want your monthly benefit payments (including advance payments) to be deposited via EFT in a different account, you must file an EFT Election at Retirement Form (code BK66).
If you are currently paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit for work in a position that does not entitle you to TRS membership (e.g., substitute or per diem teacher): You must file an EFT Election at Retirement Form if you want your monthly benefit payments (including advance payments) to be deposited via EFT.
If you are not currently paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit: You must file an EFT Election at Retirement Form if you want your monthly benefit payments (including advance payments) deposited via EFT.
Retiring TRS members who are not currently paid on the City of New York payroll through direct deposit MUST file either an EFT Election at Retirement Form or an Opt Out of EFT at Retirement Form (code BK67) in order to receive their advance and/or regular retirement allowance payments. Failure to file one of these forms would result in a delay in the payment of benefits.
These two forms are available on request from our Member Services Center (not from our website). Members who are retiring should speak with a Member Services Representative for more information about EFT.
How can I initiate or change my EFT account after retirement?
If you are a retiree (or beneficiary) who is receiving monthly benefit payments, you should complete an EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) to either enroll in EFT or to change your existing EFT account. You must return the completed form, along with required documentation, to TRS.
On what day will funds be deposited in my account under EFT?
Under the EFT system, funds are deposited in your account on the day the payment is issued. Monthly benefit payments, withdrawals, and other distributions are generally issued by the last day of each month. In order for a loan payment to be forwarded to your account via EFT by a given Friday, TRS must generally receive your loan application by the close of business on Wednesday of the preceding week. All payments deposited via EFT are available for immediate withdrawal.
Can one EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) or EFT Election at Retirement Form (code BK66) be filed to receive both QPP retirement allowance payments and TDA annuity payments through EFT?
Yes, as long as the payments are to be deposited in the same account. You must indicate this on your EFT Authorization Form or EFT Election at Retirement Form.
May different types of monthly benefit payments be deposited in different accounts?
Yes, by filing a separate EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) or EFT Election at Retirement Form (code BK66), as applicable, for each account.
Please note that you cannot submit an EFT Authorization Form or EFT Election at Retirement Form in order to receive a QPP or TDA loan via EFT. QPP and TDA loans can be distributed electronically only if you are already receiving your paychecks through direct deposit or retirement allowance payments through EFT.
On the EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) or EFT Election at Retirement Form (code BK66), should I check off "savings" or "checking" if my EFT will be made to a money market account?
Members should contact their bank to determine if the money market account is considered a checking or a savings account.
What happens after I file an EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) and/or an EFT Election at Retirement Form (code BK66)?
If you filed an EFT Authorization Form , your EFT would generally begin within 15-45 days after TRS' receipt of your correctly completed form. If you filed an EFT Election at Retirement Form, your EFT would begin with your first monthly benefit payment. If you did not complete your form correctly, TRS would send you a letter indicating why your EFT could not be processed, and including further instructions and a new form to file, as applicable.
Before your EFT begins, TRS will send you a letter confirming the type of account (i.e., checking or savings), account number, transit routing number, and the financial institution to which payments are to be deposited. If you currently receive your monthly benefit payments via paper checks, your confirmation letter will also indicate when your EFT will start, as well as the date of your final paper check.
May I stop my EFT and have my checks mailed to me?
You may cancel your EFT at any time by filing an EFT/Direct Deposit Cancellation Request Form (code BK19) with TRS. (To cancel EFT of payments made to two different accounts, you must file a separate form for each account.) The cancellation of your EFT should take effect on the first payroll that occurs 15-45 days after TRS receives this form; you will then begin to receive paper checks by mail. You may reinstate your EFT by filing another EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) with TRS.
What may cause my EFT to stop?
If your account is closed, your account number is modified, or your financial institution closes or merges with another, your payment cannot be credited, and your EFT would be automatically suspended. TRS would notify you by letter if this occurs, and you would then receive future payments by check at your home address. To reinstate your EFT in this case, you would need to file another EFT Authorization Form (code BK58) . Your EFT should resume within 15-45 days after TRS' receipt of your correctly completed form.
To request a paper check replacement for any uncredited EFT payment(s), you may write to TRS' Banking Unit at 55 Water Street, New York, NY 10041.
Can I change the account or financial institution to which my EFT is sent?
Yes. To do so, you should file an updated EFT Authorization Form (code BK58).
What should I do if my account information or personal information changes?
If your account number changes (within your financial institution), or if you are changing financial institutions, you must notify TRS by filing an updated EFT Authorization Form (code BK58). To avoid interruption of your EFT, TRS would need to receive your form at least 45 days prior to the change.
It is important that you notify TRS whenever your address changes. If you are an in-service member or retiree, you may change your address either by accessing our website or by filing a paper Member's Change of Address Form (code DM13) with TRS. If you are a beneficiary, you may change your address by filing a paper Beneficiary's Change of Address Form (code DM14). Failure to notify TRS when your address changes will not interrupt your EFT; however, it may prevent you from receiving your EFT Quarterly Statements, tax documents, and other important correspondence from TRS.
How often will I receive EFT statements?
TRS issues EFT statements for monthly retirement allowance and TDA annuity payments on a quarterly basis. For loans and other payments disbursed through EFT, a letter confirming the deposit will be sent to your home address. You may also view a secure online record of your monthly payments by accessing our website. Payments will be available for viewing approximately one week after the pay date; up to three years of payment history will be available.