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Cape Fear Community College full-time employees automatically become members of the North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS) . Employees contribute 6 percent of their pre-tax salaries into the system.

Retirement Handbook


Members of the retirement system become vested after a minimum of five years of retirement service credit (including service with other agencies). Vesting means that you are eligible to apply for lifetime monthly retirement benefits once you meet the minimum age and service requirements set forth by the retirement formula (as long as you do not withdraw your contributions).

Retirement Eligibility

Employees may retire with unreduced benefits after:

Age 65 with 5 years of creditable service, or
Age 60 with 25 years of creditable service, or
At any age with 30 years of creditable service


Employees may retire early with a reduced benefit after:

Age 60 with 5 years of creditable service, or
Age 50 with 20 years of creditable service

Retiree Medical

Employees Hired January 1, 2021, or After NOT Eligible for Retiree Medical Benefits:
State law now dictates that employees hired on or after January 1, 2021, are not eligible for retiree medical benefits. The change was included in the 2017 Appropriations Act.

Specifically, the action amends Article 3B of Chapter 135 of the General Statutes to require that retirees must earn contributory retirement service in the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (or in an allowed local system unit), the Consolidated Judicial Retirement System, and the Legislative Retirement System prior to January 1, 2021, and not withdraw that service, in order to be eligible for retiree medical benefits under the amended law.

If you were first hired prior to October 1, 2006, after you retire the state will pay the same amount of employee-only premium as the College pays for active employees. If you were hired on or after October 1, 2006, you must have 20 or more years of creditable service to receive this full benefit. If you have between ten and 20 years of service, the state will pay 50 percent. If you retire with five to ten years of service, you must pay the full premium. Beginning January 1, 2014, Medicare-primary retirees have a new set of State Health Plan options available.

Frequently Asked Questions
  1. What is ORBIT and how do I begin?

  2. How do I designate or change my beneficiaries?
    • Log in to ORBIT (Note: If you have not used ORBIT before, you will need to register first. To complete the registration, you need to supply your Social Security number, birth date, and zip code.)
    • Once logged in, click on the “Maintain Beneficiaries” tab on the left-hand side of the screen.
    • On the next screen, you can view your beneficiaries, and use the add, edit and delete features to change your beneficiary(ies).​
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