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Employees who are active University of California Retirement Plan (UCRP) members, or active Savings Choice participants in the UC Defined Contribution Plan (as well as new Eligible Employees who are in their initial 90-day window period during which they select either UCRP/Pension Choice or Savings Choice) AND who are not members of the Academic Senate, are eligible to vote in the 2023 election.

Active UCRP member or Savings Choice participant

Prior to July 1, 2016, active UCRP membership was automatic and mandatory for all Eligible Employees, effective with the first day of their eligible appointment. Pursuant to the implementation of the Retirement Choice Program effective July 1, 2016, new Eligible Employees, and former UCRP members rehired as Eligible Employees on after July 1, 2016, following a tier break in service, have a 90-day window period to elect to participate in either UCRP/Pension Choice or Savings Choice. If no primary retirement plan election is made within the 90-day window period, the Eligible Employee defaults to UCRP/Pension Choice. An Eligible Employee is an employee with an appointment that is at least 50 percent time or more on a fixed or variable basis for one year or longer.

Employees with limited appointments, employees in contract positions, employees in “noncareer” positions at the Department of Energy laboratory and certain academic employees may become eligible for retirement choice and either UCRP/Pension membership or Savings Choice participation after working 1,000 hours in a rolling, continuous 12-month period. (Members of the Non-Senate Instructional Unit qualify for UCRP membership after working 750 hours in an eligible position.) Eligibility for choice between UCRP/Pension Choice or Savings Choice is effective no later than the first of the month following the month in which 1,000 hours (or 750 hours) is reached.

Exceptions: A University employee is not an Eligible Employee, and therefore ineligible for membership in UCRP/Pension Choice or participation in Savings Choice, if the employee: 

  • Is at the University primarily to obtain education or training
  • Is in a Per Diem, Floater or Limited appointment
  • Is an employee hired as a visiting appointee on or after August 1, 1989, or 
  • Is a retired member

Once you become an active UCRP/Pension Choice member or active Savings Choice participant, your active plan status remains in effect, regardless of any reduction in appointment, until you have a break in service (see Definitions, below).

Break in service

A break in service includes any separation from service, any period on pay status but without covered compensation, or any period off pay status for four or more consecutive months. The following periods do not constitute a break in service for UCRP/Pension Choice membership or Savings Choice participation as long as the employee returns to pay status at the end of the period: 

  • Approved leave of absence without pay
  • Temporary layoff (less than four months) 
  • Furlough
  • Period of right to recall and preference for reemployment 
  • Return to pay status the next working day after leaving University employment 
  • Return to pay status after a military leave in accordance with employees’ reemployment rights or 
  • Return to pay status from a medical separation within the time allowed under University policy