SURS Facts – Prior Service


Prior Service is employment with SURS covered employers during which the member was not a participant of SURS. The employment took place before they began their participation in SURS. If member has never been certified into SURS system, even with reciprocal time, prior service cannot be purchased-there is no certification date for service to be prior to.


  • Must have been employed at 50% time or more with an employer covered by SURS.
    • If termination date was prior to Sept. 5, 1975, employment must have been at 100% time.
    • Time worked with an institution prior to the institution becoming a SURS covered employer in not eligible (See Other Public Employment).
  • Exact dates and percentage of employment must be verified through SURS employer.
  • Employment must have been prior to a SURS certification date.
  • Traditional/Portable can be active or inactive to purchase Prior Service.SURS Retirement Savings Plan (RSP) must be active to purchase Prior service.
  • Can be used for vesting.
  • Traditional/Portable receive any applicable employer match.
  • RSP does not receive employer match.


  • Principal at daily rate on certification plus interest.
  • The amount of the payment depends on the member’s full-time or full-time equivalent salary on the date they became certified and the employee contribution rate at the time of prior service.
  • Payment also includes interest.
    • Interest rate used is 6% compounded annually from the date they became participant until Aug. 31, 1982.
    • Beginning Sept. 1, 1982, the effective rate of interest is used.