If you become permanently incapacitated because of employment with an SBCERA employer, you may be eligible for a Disability Retirement. Permanently incapacitated means you are physically or mentally incapacitated from performing the usual duties of your job. It can also be described as the substantial inability to perform your usual job duties, although, it is not necessary for you to be physically or mentally incapable for performing each and every duty or task that might arise within your job classification. The incapacity is permanent if change, for the better or worse, is not to be reasonably anticipated under usual standards.
Types of Disability Retirement
There are two types of Disability Retirements:
The requirements and benefit impacts differ for each type. Read below for a summary of each type.
Supplemental (General Members)
Your permanent incapacity must be a result of an injury or disease arising out of your employment.
Your permanent incapacity is not a result of an injury or disease arising out of your employment.
Incapable of gainful employment.
50% of your highest final average compensation or your service retirement benefit amount, whichever is greater.
20% up to a maximum of 40% of your highest final average compensation, depending on your years of service credit or your service retirement benefit amount, whichever is greater.
Years of Service
The Application Process
Applying for a Disability Retirement is an extensive process that requires a comprehensive evaluation of your Disability Retirement application. Below is an outline of what you may expect:
Step 1: Contact SBCERA – To begin the process and request the required forms and information, please send us a message or call us at (909) 885-7980 or Toll Free (877) 722-3721.
Step 2: Apply for Disability Retirement Online – You can apply for disability retirement online in your online member portal, mySBCERA. If you have not enrolled in mySBCERA, you can view our mySBCERA Quick Reference Guide - Active Members for step-by-step information on how to enroll.
Step 3: Submit Completed Application for Review – Submit a completed and signed application to SBCERA that includes the SBCERA Physician’s Report, Applicant’s Statement of Facts and Circumstances, Physician Listing Form, and Medical Releases. You can track the status of your application by clicking on “Disability Retirement Application” on your Account Summary page under Requests.
Step 4: Schedule and Attend a Consultation Appointment with SBCERA – SBCERA will contact you to confirm that your application has been accepted for processing and schedule your initial Disability Retirement consultation.
Step 5: Document Collection and Processing – SBCERA staff will collect and assemble medical and personnel documents pertaining to the Disability Retirement application. Remember, you have the burden of proving that you are entitled to the benefits you are requesting.
Step 6: Independent Medical Examination – You may be required to submit to one or more independent medical examinations based on your claimed injury and/or illness.
Step 7: Comprehensive Medical Review and Preparation for the SBCERA Board of Retirement – The SBCERA Medical Advisor will conduct a comprehensive review of the records pertaining to the application and advises the SBCERA Board of Retirement on medical matters.
Step 8: SBCERA Board of Retirement Initial Hearing – The Disability Retirement application will be considered by the SBCERA Board of Retirement.
NOTE: Generally, in order for your application to be deemed timely, your Disability Retirement application must be submitted while you are still in service as an Active Member, or within four months after discontinuance of service, or it must establish that you have been continuously physically or mentally incapacitated from the date of discontinuance of service.
Procedures for SBCERA Disability Retirement Applications and Formal Hearings
The Procedures for SBCERA Disability Retirement Applications and Formal Hearings(“Rules”) are enacted to provide procedures for submitting and acting upon applications for disability retirement benefits under the County Employees’ Retirement Law of 1937, so that Applications can be fairly and efficiently processed. All proceedings for disability retirement shall be conducted in accordance with the Rules.