Changing Jobs FAQs

Sometimes the road to retirement includes job changes, but leaving your county or district job doesn’t mean you have to leave your retirement savings behind.

Even if you’re not vested, when you leave your job, you may choose to keep your money in TCDRS because it will continue to earn 7% compound interest each year. If you take a future job with another TCDRS-covered employer, or a job covered by the Proportionate Retirement Program, such as the state, city or school district, that service time can help you reach retirement eligibility.

Here are the most common questions about leaving your job:


Q) What are my account options?

A) You can keep your money with TCDRS and watch your savings continue to grow at 7% compound interest, roll your money over into another qualified retirement account (though you’ll lose employer matching), or withdraw your money (though you’ll lose employer matching and pay tax consequences).

Consider your options carefully. If you are vested and withdraw your account, you could be walking away from an important income source in retirement. TCDRS Member Services is here to help as you weigh your options, so please call at 800-823-7782 with any questions or schedule an online counseling session.


Q) How do I apply for a withdrawal?

A) You must leave employment before you can apply for a withdrawal. The “Apply for Withdrawal” link is located in the footer when you sign into your online TCDRS account. Your former employer must provide us with your last date of employment to complete processing. We will reach out to your former employer for this information.


Q) How long does it take to get a withdrawal payment?

A) Your payment will be issued within two to four weeks after TCDRS receives your application and obtains your last date of employment from your former employer.


Q) Can I withdraw a portion of my account balance?

A) If you decide to withdraw your account, you must take the full amount. You can choose to receive the money in a lump sum, roll it over into an IRA or other qualified retirement account, or a combination of both. Your withdrawal will not include employer matching. Remember that you only get employer matching if you retire. As long as you are employed and making deposits into your account, you cannot make a withdrawal.


Q) Can I add money back to a closed account?

A) Yes. You may have the opportunity to deposit your money back into any closed TCDRS accounts. You can choose to make a one-time deposit of any amount up to what you originally withdrew, or you can deposit the original amount plus an amount that would cover employer matching. Please call Member Services at 800-823-7782 to learn more about your options.


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