New Members

Explore the resources we’ve created to help you understand how your PERA membership works for you.

Welcome to Colorado PERA!

Your employer is one of more than 400 throughout Colorado that are part of PERA. Because of your new job there, you’re now a PERA member. PERA stands for Public Employees’ Retirement Association and we provide retirement benefits for those working in Colorado’s public sector.

PERA has two types of retirement plans: A defined benefit (also called a pension) plan where PERA invests funds on your behalf and then provides a lifetime monthly benefit in retirement, and a defined contribution plan where you choose your investments and then draw from your account balance in retirement.

The PERA retirement plan you are in depends on the employer for which you work. Follow the links below for more information.

I work…

  • For a school district, a charter school, or a BOCES
  • As a judge
  • At a university or college in a non-State classified position*
  • For an Office of the District Attorney in a position other than the District Attorney, Deputy District Attorney, or an Assistant District Attorney
  • At one of the following organizations:
    • Colorado Water Resources & Power Development Authority
    • Colorado Association of School Boards
    • Pinnacol Assurance
    • Public Employees’ Retirement Association
    • Special District Association of Colorado
    • Colorado High School Activities Association
    • Fire and Police Pension Association
    • Colorado Association of School Executives

* You may be required to be in your university or college’s Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) instead of in PERA.

You are in the PERA defined benefit plan

I work…

  • For the State of Colorado
  • At a community college
  • At a university or college as a classified employee in the State personnel system
  • For a local government or special district
  • As a District Attorney, Deputy District Attorney, or Assistant District Attorney

You have the option to choose the PERA defined benefit or defined contribution plan