CU Boulder has adopted new measures to deal with COVID-19.  As part of that effort, the Department of Human Resources is sharing employment guidance to help you manage COVID-19 concerns.

If the employee can work remotely, the employee should continue to work remotely to reduce the population density for those who are working on campus. 

For HR-related questions, contact the Department of Human Resources at 303-492-6475.

Retirement/Separation Incentive Program FAQs

To determine eligibility for a retirement/separation incentive program, employees need to reach out to their department HR, not Employee Services.  Each department may choose to offer an incentive program and this is not a campus or university program.

These questions and answers are general in nature and are meant to give employees an overall impression of some of the concerns that might arise when considering the VSIP. They are not all encompassing, nor do they address all specific situations. 

CU Boulder does not offer financial, tax, retirement or legal counseling or advice. Please consult with a professional financial or tax advisor, your retirement vendor, and an attorney to make the most informed decision.

For Tenured Faculty Retirement Incentive Program, please contact Faculty Affairs

For employees thinking about retirement, Employee Services' Retiring from CU page is a great resource that will answer many questions employees may have before they having an opportunity to meet with a retirement specialist.  

Voluntary Separation Incentive Program for Classified Employees FAQs

What is the Voluntary Separation Incentive Program (VSIP) for Classified Employees?

The Voluntary Separation Incentive Program (VSIP) is a program that offers financial incentives to eligible classified employees who voluntarily decide to leave their position. Participation in the program is voluntary and subject to approval of the department leadership.

Why is the Voluntary Separation Incentive Program being offered?
  • The department leadership decided it could be mutually beneficial to offer eligible employees an opportunity to apply for participation in a VSIP in order to avoid future layoffs.
 

 

Who is eligible to participate in the VSIP?

Permanent, classified employees of the department or unit who are in certified or trial service status. Employees who have received a specific notice of disciplinary termination or who currently occupy a position for which a waiver of retention or appeal rights is a condition of employment are not eligible.

Will every eligible employee be approved to participate?

No. The decision to approve or deny an application from an eligible employee will take into account the financial benefit gained and the impact on the department and its programs and services, and the decision will be made with the best interests of the department in mind. Final approval of any separation incentive application will be at the discretion of the department leadership.

What are the Plan requirements?

Employees who agree to accept the terms and conditions of the VSIP will voluntarily relinquish all rights to continued employment on the agreed upon date of employment separation. If the department leadership approves the application, the employee will then execute a Voluntary Separation Incentive Agreement. The agreement specifies that the employee is waiving retention and employment rights and certain other legal rights and is encouraged to seek independent legal counsel before signing.

How does an employee apply?

Eligible classified employees may apply for participation in the VSIP by submitting their application to the department contact by the deadline published in the department program.

What is the timeline?

The specific deadline to apply will be published in the department program document.  If approved you will receive the VSIP document and you will have 14 calendar days from the day you receive the agreement to sign it and return it.

What are the incentives to participate in the Program?

Eligible classified employees who accept the VSIP offer will receive a separation payment defined in the department program.  The employee will receive payment in one lump sum at the earliest in their last paycheck and after there has been compliance with all other provisions of the Agreement including but not limited to the expiration of the potential seven-day revocation period by the employee. The employee is required to pay all applicable taxes on the payment. Payments under the agreement are offered as an inducement to separate from CU Boulder, are not considered earned wages for retirement purposes and will not generate contributions to any retirement plan, nor will the payments affect the highest average salary calculation for PERA benefits.

If I am approved to participate in the VSIP, can I return to work at the Department later?

Participating classified employees are giving up their right to be re-employed by the Department. However, there may be future opportunities for a participating employee to return to the Department on a temporary or permanent basis. Return to a temporary or permanent appointment at the department will be at the discretion of the department in accordance with State Personnel Board Rules and Personnel Director’s Administrative Procedures.

What if I can’t decide by the deadline? Will this incentive be offered again?

This VSIP is offered now as a result of the Department’s need to reduce costs and prevent potential layoffs.   There is no guarantee the incentive program will be offered again.

If I have already planned my retirement, can I take advantage of the incentive?

No.  A planned retirement is already being considered in the department cost reduction scenarios.  There is no need for the department to incentivize someone who is already planning to retire. 

Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program for University Staff and Twelve-Month Faculty FAQs

What is the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program (VRIP) for University Staff and Twelve-Month Faculty?

The Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program (VRIP) is a program that offers financial incentives to eligible university staff and twelve-month faculty who voluntarily decide to leave their position. Participation in the program is voluntary and subject to approval of the department leadership.

Why is the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program being offered?

The department leadership decided it could be mutually beneficial to offer eligible employees an opportunity to apply for participation in a VRIP in order to avoid future layoffs.

Who is eligible to participate in the VRIP?

Permanent, university staff and twelve-month faculty of the department or unit who will be 50 years old or greater on the date of retirement. Employees who have received a specific notice of disciplinary termination or who currently occupy a position for which a waiver of retention or appeal rights is a condition of employment are not eligible.

Will every eligible employee be approved to participate?

No. The decision to approve or deny an application from an eligible employee will take into account the financial benefit gained and the impact on the department and its programs and services, and the decision will be made with the best interests of the department in mind. Final approval of any separation incentive application will be at the discretion of the department leadership.

What are the Plan requirements?

Employees who agree to accept the terms and conditions of the VRIP will voluntarily relinquish all rights to continued employment on the agreed upon date of employment separation. If the department leadership approves the application, the employee will then execute a Release of Claims agreement. The agreement specifies that the employee is waiving employment rights and certain other legal rights and is encouraged to seek independent legal counsel before signing.

How does an employee apply?

Eligible employees may apply for participation in the VRIP by submitting their application to the department contact by the deadline published in the department program.  

What is the timeline?

The specific deadline to apply will be published in the department program document.  If approved you will receive the Release of Claims agreement and you will have 14 calendar days from the day you receive the agreement to sign it and return it.  

What are the incentives to participate in the Program?

Eligible employees who accept the VRIP offer will receive a separation payment defined in the department program.  The employee will receive payment in one lump sum at the earliest in their last paycheck and after there has been compliance with all other provisions of the Agreement including but not limited to the expiration of the potential seven-day revocation period by the employee. The employee is required to pay all applicable taxes on the payment. Payments under the agreement are offered as an inducement to separate from CU Boulder, are not considered earned wages for retirement purposes and will not generate contributions to any retirement plan, nor will the payments affect the highest average salary calculation for PERA benefits.

If I am approved to participate in the VRIP, can I return to work at the Department later?

Participating employees are giving up their right to be re-employed by the department. However, there may be future opportunities for a participating employee to return to the department on a temporary or permanent basis. Return to a temporary or permanent appointment at the department will be at the discretion of the department.

What if I can’t decide by the deadline? Will this incentive be offered again?

This VRIP is offered now as a result of the Department’s need to reduce costs and prevent potential layoffs.   There is no guarantee the incentive program will be offered again.

If I have already planned my retirement, can I take advantage of the incentive?

No.  A planned retirement is already being considered in the department cost reduction scenarios.  There is no need for the department to incentivize someone who is already planning to retire.