Tag Archives: federal tax withholding

Retirement Online for Retirees Keeps Getting Better

More than 480,000 members and retirees have discovered that Retirement Online is the fastest way to do business with NYSLRS. It’s secure and convenient, and helps you avoid calling or mailing forms. It also gives you instant access to information about your benefits. And, your important documents will be available online, sooner than printed copies are mailed.

Retirement Online for Retirees Keeps Getting Better

Retirees Can Do Even More in Retirement Online

The Fastest Way to Get Your 1099-R Tax Document

With Retirement Online, you can get the tax information you need faster. If you receive a taxable benefit from NYSLRS, your 1099-R is now available online. Sign in to view, save or print your tax form for 2023.

View Your Retiree Annual Statement Online

Your Retiree Annual Statement provides important information about your benefit amount, deductions and tax withholding. Beginning with your 2023 Statement, you can now access it in Retirement Online.

Make the Switch to Email and ‘Go Green’

Be the first to know when documents are available online — email delivery gives you access to your important documents sooner. It also helps the environment by reducing paper consumption. ‘Go green’ by choosing the paperless option.

It’s easy to make the switch. To receive an email when your 1099-R tax form and Retiree Annual Statement are available in Retirement Online next year:

  • Sign in to Retirement Online.
  • From your Account Homepage, click the “update” link next to ‘1099-R Tax Form Delivery by’ or ‘Retiree Annual Statement by.’
  • Choose “Email” from the dropdown.

Be sure to check that the email address listed in your Retirement Online profile is current.

If you choose the email delivery preference, you will not receive a printed copy in the mail.

Don’t Forget These Timesaving Features

Change Your Federal Tax Withholding

No forms needed — Retirement Online is the fastest way to update your withholding. If you submit your changes by the middle of the month, they will generally be applied to that month’s payment.

Generate a Pension Verification Letter

There are organizations that may ask you for a letter verifying your pension income — maybe for housing or as part of an application for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP). You can use Retirement Online to save or print your own letter any time you need one.

Manage Your Direct Deposit

Use Retirement Online to securely update your direct deposit bank account information. Whether you’ve switched banks or need to move your deposits to a different account, you can make those changes quickly with Retirement Online. Changes are generally applied within one to two payments, and more quickly than if you send in a paper form.

View Your Pension Pay Stubs

You can access pay stubs for your benefit payments by clicking the date of the payment you want to view. You can track year-to-date totals and any deductions for health insurance, union dues, tax withholding or disbursements under a domestic relations order, giving you greater insight into your benefits. NYSLRS will also send you a notice whenever the amount of your monthly payment changes.

Update Your Contact Information

Let us know if you move or your phone number or email address change. Update your contact information quickly in Retirement Online to make sure you continue to receive important news and information about your benefits.

You can even schedule an address change, so you’ll get NYSLRS mail at your seasonal home without interruption.

Manage Your Beneficiaries

Eligible retirees can change their beneficiary for their post-retirement death benefit or update contact information for an existing beneficiary.

If You Haven’t Opened Your Account, Sign Up Today

If you don’t have a Retirement Online account, now is a great time to sign up. Click “Sign Up” on our Retirement Online Sign In page to get started. We have step-by-step instructions on registering for your account and how to sign in for the first time. If it’s been a while, you may need to look up your user ID or reset your password.

You may also find our Retirement Online Tools and Tips blog post helpful.

Your Retiree Annual Statement: Now Available Online

Your Retiree Annual Statement is now available in Retirement Online! Retirees who opted to go paperless already received an email notifying them that their Statement is available in their Retirement Online account.

If you did not change your delivery preference to email, your Statement will be mailed by the end of February.

Get Your Statement Online Now

Whether you chose email delivery or not, you can access your Statement in your Retirement Online account now. To view, save or print your Statement:

If you don’t have an account, you can find step-by-step instructions for registering in the Tools & Tips section of the Retirement Online page.

Your Retiree Annual Statement is now available in Retirement Online

Inside Your Retiree Annual Statement

Your Statement has a new look this year, but it still contains the same information you receive every year about your benefit amount, deductions and tax withholding. Your Retiree Annual Statement includes:

  • Your NYSLRS ID. To protect your privacy, use this number instead of your Social Security number when conducting business with NYSLRS.
  • The total amount of your annual benefit. (This is your base benefit, before taxes, deductions and credits.)
  • Your total net benefit for the year. (This is your benefit after taxes, deductions and credits.)
  • The total amount of any cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), if you are eligible.
  • Your total Medicare credits (if eligible).
  • Federal tax withholding (if applicable).
  • Other deductions taken from your pension, such as payments to an alternate payee or union dues.
  • Health insurance premiums. (NYSLRS doesn’t administer health insurance benefits, but we deduct retiree premiums at the request of your former employer.)

Next Year Don’t Wait for the Mail

Going forward, your Statement will be available online in early February each year.

Update your delivery preference now to receive an email as soon as next year’s Retiree Annual Statement is available online:

  • Sign in to Retirement Online.
  • From your Account Homepage, click the “update” link next to ‘Retiree Annual Statement by.’
  • Choose “Email” from the dropdown.

If you choose to receive your Statement by email, you will not receive a printed copy in the mail.

Use Retirement Online to Stay Informed

Your Statement is a snapshot of your NYSLRS account as of December 31, 2023. For the most up-to-date information year-round, sign in to Retirement OnlineIf you don’t already have an account, you can learn more or register today.

In Retirement Online, you can view pay stubs for your benefit payments. Check them if you have a question or to track year-to-date totals of your pension benefit as well as any deductions for health insurance, union dues, tax withholding or disbursements under a domestic relations order.

Your Statement is Not a Tax Document

While your Retiree Annual Statement does include information about your benefit payments and tax withholding, it is not a tax document. If your pension is taxable, you should have received a 1099-R tax form (either through your Retirement Online account or by mail, depending on your delivery preference) for filing your taxes.

Retirees: Your 1099-R is Available Online

Retirees: Your 1099-R is Available OnlineTax season is approaching, and with 1099-Rs available online, getting this key NYSLRS tax form is now faster and more convenient than ever.

Most NYSLRS pensions are subject to federal income tax (some disability benefits are not taxable). If you receive taxable income from NYSLRS, we provide a 1099-R tax form for filing your taxes. New this year, retirees who opted to go paperless received an email notifying them their 1099-R is available in their Retirement Online account. If you did not change your delivery preference to email, your 1099-R tax form will be mailed to you by January 31.

Understanding Your 1099-R

A 1099-R tax form is used to report the distribution of taxable retirement benefits. It shows:

  • The total benefit paid to you in a calendar year.
  • The taxable amount of your benefit.
  • The amount of taxes withheld from your benefit.

If you have questions about the information on the form, check our interactive 1099-R tutorial. It walks you through a sample 1099-R and offers a short explanation of each box on the form.

Get Your 1099-R Online Now

Whether you chose email delivery or not, you can access your 1099-R in your Retirement Online account now. To view, save or print your 1099-R:

  • Sign in to Retirement Online.
  • From your Account Homepage, click the “Manage My 1099-R Tax Forms” button.
  • Select “2023” from the dropdown.

If you don’t have an account, you can find step-by-step instructions for registering in the Tools & Tips section of the Retirement Online page.

Changing Your Federal Withholding

After you file your taxes, you may find that you need to adjust the federal taxes that are being withheld from your pension.

Retirement Online is the fast and convenient way to change your withholding information. You can also check your current withholding by signing in to Retirement Online and viewing your most recent pension pay stub. Visit our Taxes and Your Pension page for more information.

Note: New York State doesn’t tax your NYSLRS pension, and we can’t withhold income tax for other states.

10 Things All NYSLRS Retirees Should Know

Retirees, brush up on your Retirement System knowledge!

10 Things All NYSLRS Retirees Should Know
  1. Get Your 1099-R Tax Form in Retirement Online
    Starting in 2024, your 1099-R tax form will be available in Retirement Online! Get yours faster and help us ‘go green’ — update your delivery preference now to receive an email when it’s ready, instead of waiting for it in the mail. (If you choose to receive your 1099-R by email, you will not receive a printed copy in the mail. Regardless of your delivery preference, you will be able to view and print your 1099-R by signing in to Retirement Online at the end of January.)
  2. Change Your Federal Tax Withholding in Retirement Online
    Retirement Online is the fastest way to update your withholding. Changes submitted by the middle of the month will generally appear in that month’s payment. Most NYSLRS pensions are subject to federal income tax (some disability benefits are not taxable).
  3. Not Taxed by New York State
    Your NYSLRS pension is not subject to New York State or local income taxes. Visit our Taxes and Your Pension page for more information. If you move to another state, your pension may be subject to that state’s income tax. If you’re thinking of moving to another state, check with that state’s tax department.
  4. Get Your Retiree Annual Statement in Retirement Online
    Starting in 2024, you can use Retirement Online to view and print your annual statement. Help us go green and update your delivery preference to receive an email when it’s available, instead of waiting to receive it in the mail.
  5. Manage Your Direct Deposit in Retirement Online
    Use Retirement Online to securely update your direct deposit bank account information. Whether you’ve switched banks or need to move your deposits to a different account, you can make those changes quickly with Retirement Online. Changes are generally applied within one to two payments. You can find out when your next pension payment is coming by checking our online pension payment calendar.
  6. Prove Your Pension Income Using Retirement Online
    You may need proof of your retirement income for housing or as part of an application for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP). With Retirement Online, you can print or save an income verification letter any time you need one.
  7. Receiving Your Annual Cost of Living Increases
    Once you become eligible for a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), you will receive a permanent increase to your pension amount every September. When your net benefit amount changes, NYSLRS will inform you.
  8. View Your Pension Payment “Pay Stub” in Retirement Online
    Sign in to Retirement Online to access full pay stubs for your pension payments. Select the date of the payment you want to review to see a breakdown of your pension payment, including your most recent COLA amount as well as any deductions made for health insurance, union dues, tax withholding or disbursements under a domestic relations order.
  9. You May Leave a Death Benefit
    Your survivors may be entitled to a death benefit after you die. Retirement Online makes it easy for eligible retirees to view their beneficiary selections, choose different beneficiaries or change contact information for an existing beneficiary. Anyone can report the death of a retiree by using our online death report form.
  10. Best-Funded, Best-Managed
    The New York State Common Retirement Fund holds and invests the assets of NYSLRS on behalf of members, retirees and their beneficiaries and continues to be one of the best-funded and best-managed public pension funds in the nation. Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli is the administrative head of NYSLRS and trustee of the Common Retirement Fund.

Not retired yet? Read our blog post 10 Things All NYSLRS Members Should Know.

Retirement Online for Retirees Keeps Getting Better

More than 480,000 members and retirees have discovered that Retirement Online is the fastest way to do business with NYSLRS. It’s secure and convenient, and helps you avoid calling or mailing forms. It also gives you instant access to information about your benefits.

Retirement Online for Retirees Keeps Getting Better

Retirees Can Do Even More in Retirement Online

The Fastest Way to Get Your 1099-R Tax Document

With Retirement Online, you can get the tax information you need faster. If you receive a taxable benefit from NYSLRS, you’ll be able to view your 1099-R tax form in Retirement Online starting at the end of January 2024 for calendar year 2023.

You can update your delivery preference now to receive an email as soon as this important document is available. If you choose to receive your 1099-R by email, you will not receive a printed copy in the mail.

View Your Retiree Annual Statement Online

Your Retiree Annual Statement provides important information about your benefit amount, deductions and tax withholding. Statements will be mailed at the end of February, but they’ll be available online sooner than waiting for your mailed copy.

Make the Switch to Email and Help Us ‘Go Green’

Email delivery gives you access to your important documents sooner and helps the environment by reducing paper consumption. Help us ‘go green’ by choosing the paperless option.

It’s easy to make the switch to receive an email when your 1099-R tax form and Retiree Annual Statement are available in Retirement Online:

  • Sign in to Retirement Online.
  • From your Account Homepage, click the “update” link next to ‘1099-R Tax Form Delivery by’ or ‘Retiree Annual Statement by.’
  • Choose “Email” from the dropdown.

Be sure to check that the email address listed in your Retirement Online profile is current. Regardless of your delivery preference, you will be able to view and print your 1099-R by signing in to Retirement Online at the end of January.

Don’t Forget These Timesaving Features

Change Your Federal Tax Withholding

No forms needed — Retirement Online is the fastest way to update your withholding. If you submit your changes by the middle of the month, they will generally be applied to that month’s payment.

Generate a Pension Verification Letter

There are organizations that may ask you for a letter verifying your pension income — maybe for housing or as part of an application for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP). You can use Retirement Online to save or print your own letter any time you need one.

Manage Your Direct Deposit

Use Retirement Online to securely update your direct deposit bank account information. Whether you’ve switched banks or need to move your deposits to a different account, you can make those changes quickly with Retirement Online. Changes are generally applied within one to two payments, and more quickly than if you send in a paper form.

View Your Pension Pay Stubs

You can access pay stubs for your benefit payments by clicking the date of the payment you want to view. You can track year-to-date totals and any deductions for health insurance, union dues, tax withholding or disbursements under a domestic relations order, giving you greater insight into your benefits. NYSLRS will also send you a notice whenever the amount of your monthly payment changes.

Update Your Contact Information

Let us know if you move or your phone number or email address change. Update your contact information quickly in Retirement Online to make sure you continue to receive important news and information about your benefits.

You can even schedule an address change, so you’ll get NYSLRS mail at your seasonal home without interruption.

Manage Your Beneficiaries

Eligible retirees can change their beneficiary for their post-retirement death benefit or update contact information for an existing beneficiary.

If You Haven’t Opened Your Account, Sign Up Today

If you don’t have a Retirement Online account, now is a great time to sign up. Click “Sign Up” on our Retirement Online Sign In page to get started. We have step-by-step instructions on registering for your account and how to sign in for the first time. You may also find our Retirement Online Tools and Tips blog post helpful.

If it’s been a while, you may need to look up your username or reset your password.

If you still need assistance, you can find step-by-step instructions in the Tools & Tips section of the Retirement Online page.

Federal Tax Withholding and Your Pension

If your last federal tax bill was larger than you expected, or if you received a hefty refund, it might be time to review how much federal tax withholding comes out of your NYSLRS pension. If you’re not sure whether you need to adjust your federal withholding, you may want to check with a tax preparer.

Remember, NYSLRS only withholds federal income tax. New York State doesn’t tax your NYSLRS pension, and we can’t withhold for income tax for other states.

federal tax withholding and your pension

New W-4P Federal Tax Withholding Form

The IRS released a new version of their W-4P federal income tax withholding form. For 2023, NYSLRS was required to update our tax withholding form as well.

The new form no longer allows tax filers to adjust their withholding by electing a specific number of withholding allowances. Instead, the W-4P form has fields for increasing or decreasing the amount of withholding, including fields for tax credits and deductions. 

You do not need to submit the new W-4P unless you want to change the amount of your tax withholding.

To Change Your Withholding

Retirement Online makes it fast and convenient to view your current federal withholding information and make changes using our online form that collects the same information as the paper form. You can check your current withholding by signing in to Retirement Online and viewing your most recent pension pay stub. To change your federal tax withholding, click the green “Update My W-4P Tax Information” button on your Account Homepage.

If you update your withholding online by the middle of the month, your changes will generally be applied that month. We’ll notify you by mail or email (depending on your contact preference) when the update has been completed.

Completing the Form

Basic Withholding

Step 1. Select your filing status. If you want your federal withholding to be based only on the benefit amount you receive from NYSLRS, with no adjustments, you can skip steps 2 – 4.

Adjustments to Withholding (Dependents, Tax Credits)

Complete Steps 2 – 4 ONLY if they apply to you.

Step 2. If you have income from a job or more than one pension/annuity, in addition to your NYSLRS pension, or if you’re married filing jointly and your spouse receives income from a job or pension/annuity, you can enter that in Step 2.

Click “View Instructions” or see page 2 of the paper W-4P form for examples that may help you with this step.

Step 3. If you need to claim dependents, you can enter that information in Step 3.

Step 4. If you have other adjustments to make — other income, deductions or extra withholding — you can complete Step 4.

Click “View Instructions” or see page 3 of the paper W-4P form for instructions and a worksheet that may help you with this step.

If you prefer to send in a paper form, you can print, complete and submit our W-4P Withholding Certificate for Pension or Annuity Payments form to update your withholding information, however paper forms take longer to process. Please be sure you are using the new form (revised 12/22), because NYSLRS will no longer accept previous versions of the W‑4P form.

If You Receive More Than One Benefit Payment from NYSLRS

NYSLRS administers two retirement systems — the Employees’ Retirement System (ERS) and the Police and Fire Retirement System (PFRS). It is possible to receive more than one benefit from one or both systems — as a retiree, a beneficiary or an ex-spouse who is receiving a benefit under a domestic relations order.

Generally, your withholding is tied to the retirement system. So, if your benefits are from the same system, you only need to submit your withholding information once and your preferences will be applied to all benefit payments you receive from that system. However, if you receive a benefit from both ERS and PFRS, you’ll need to submit a W-4P form for each system.

Your benefit payment pay stub will list whether the payment is from ERS or PFRS.

For More Information

Our Taxes and Your Pension page has additional information about withholding, including 1099-R tax form information, how to submit a paper W-4P form, what to do if you receive more than one benefit payment from NYSLRS and more.

If you need help completing the W-4P form, you can find phone numbers and online resources on the IRS Let Us Help You page.

Please note: Effective January 1, 2023, NYSLRS does not withhold federal income tax from benefits that are not subject to tax reporting.