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If you become disabled, you may be eligible for a disability retirement benefit. This allows you to retire early with a lifetime monthly benefit.
Eligibility for Disability
If you are vested, you are eligible for a disability retirement if:
You are permanently disabled and
You are unable to work at any gainful occupation
To find out if you are vested, sign into your account. If you are not vested, you may be eligible for disability retirement if the permanent disability is due to a job-related injury.
How to Apply
To qualify for disability retirement, you must prove you are physically or mentally incapacitated for any gainful employment. In other words, you’ll need to prove you are unable to work in any job — not just your current job — and that the disability is permanent.
You will need to complete a Disability Retirement Application (TCDRS-31) and submit it along with other required documents and medical records. Your physician(s) will be required to complete a statement, too.
Your application will be reviewed for eligibility; this process may take up to eight weeks. Our Medical Board may require subsequent medical examinations after approval.
If you are already eligible for retirement, we will process your benefit as a regular service retirement. This allows you to start receiving your lifetime monthly benefit more quickly and the benefit will be exactly the same as if you had applied for disability retirement.
It is also important to speak to your employer about any other requirements or benefits they may offer. For more information about disability retirement and to discuss your options, call Member Services at 800-823-7782.
Get more information on why TCDRS is a model plan when it comes to retirement.