As a public employee, you need to understand how their retirement from public institutions works and what you get out of it. This forms the foundation for your plan for future retirement. Having succession planning tips can help you immensely. The retirement payout, costs, plans are all different in all states, although they share a few standard basics.

The Defined Benefit Plan (DFP) for instance is universal. It’s the pension and likely income source. It’s calculated for the years worked, salary, and the factors governing your specific plan.

Succession Planning Tips to Help You Retire on Your Terms

To stay on the right track with your retirement plans, look at the retirement planning tips discussed here.

Understand Pension Your Plan Early

Ensure to review your pension plan early enough. You don’t need to know each detail about it but so that you can know where you stand and where it leads you. Then, compare it with your financial goals, lifestyle, future financial needs and obligations, and more importantly, when you intend to retire.

Avoid Pension Penalties

Taking an early retirement and withdraw from a retirement plan, you incur penalties. First, you’ll be required to pay your income taxes on the withdrawal. Then, you’ll incur another 10% penalty on the amount you receive. These rules are applicable to traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) and 401(k) plans. However, with the proper reason for the withdrawal, you can avoid the penalties.¹

Think Twice Before Changing Plans 

Stick to your plan unless you are sure that changing it will be the best option. If other people are saying a different plan is good, it might just be good for them and not for you. Only change if you are sure the plan fits your circumstances and will work better for you. For instance, a 403(b) plan might seem better. Because it allows larger contributions, flexibility, and more options than traditional plans, however, it features higher fees.


Think of Other Investments

You can use other personal plans to create a safer landing at retirement. Plans like Personal IRA, Roth, and life insurance retirement plans can open you up to larger lifetime benefits, personal finance management, and access to investments.

Know and Keep your Numbers in Check

It’s essential to know your total income and how much you can use to contribute to your retirement plans. When it comes to retirement planning, you should always consider taxes. The two main ways you can reduce your taxes are through tax exemption and tax deferring. Knowing the strategies to save on taxes can end up in a considerable reduction in your lifetime taxes, altogether.²

Succession Planning Tips for Early Retirement

Before everything was as it is right now, retirement for public employees was bliss. They used to earn almost an equivalent of their annual earnings even at retirement. This has since changed, and you need to take charge of your retirement if you want to retire on terms that favor you. You’ll need to be proactive in putting aside some funds and adding to your plans for that to happen. 


“About Mountain West Financial and the CalPATH Home Loan Program

Mountain West Financial is the exclusive lender offering CalPATH, the #1 home loan program for Teachers, Police Officers, Firefighters, and other public employees who serve our local California communities.

You may contact our CalPATH Hotline @ 800-310-7577, seven days a week from (8:30 am to 8:00 pm). A CalPATH advisor will be standing by to answer (any & all) questions you may have about the home buying or refinance process.

We look forward to working with you soon!


Joe Moore

Branch Manager”


Links to External Sources:

  1. Avoiding the Penalty on Early Retirement Plan Withdrawals
  2. These strategies can reduce the taxes you will pay on retirement accounts