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The Florida Statutes

The 2017 Florida Statutes

Title X
PUBLIC OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AND RECORDS
Chapter 122
STATE AND COUNTY OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM
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F.S. 122.34
122.34 Special provisions for certain sheriffs and full-time deputy sheriffs.
(1)(a) In addition to sheriffs and full-time deputy sheriffs, the provisions of this section shall apply with respect to members who are officers or full-time employees of the state or the several counties of the state whose duties are to enforce the criminal laws of the state, except for those officers or full-time employees holding office or employed on or before July 1, 1963, who were then 55 years old or older and who elected in writing, and filed with the Comptroller within 90 days after July 1, 1963, their rejection to this section and except those officers or full-time employees, excluding present high hazard members, holding office or employed on or before July 1, 1967, who are then 55 years old or older and who elect in writing, filed with the Comptroller within 90 days after July 1, 1967, to reject this section, and such members who do not so elect to reject this section hereinafter shall be referred to as “high hazard” members.
(b) Only those members who are full-time criminal law enforcement officers or agents, as certified by the employing authority, who perform duties according to rule, order, or established custom as full-time criminal law enforcement officers or agents shall be certified to the department as high hazard members, and only such members will be approved by the department.
(c) The department shall make such rules as are necessary for the effective administration of the intent of this section.
(2) All high hazard members shall contribute 2.5 percent of each installment of salary, to the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund, which percentage shall be in addition to the percentage required in s. 122.03, or in s. 122.27 whichever is applicable.
(3) Any high hazard member who has been classified within the contemplation of this section as a “high hazard” member for the last 10 years or more of his or her employment and who is serving as a high hazard member, and who has made the additional contributions to the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund provided in subsection (2) for a period of not less than 5 years or who makes total additional contributions in amount equal to 5 years of additional contribution based on his or her then-current rate of salary, may retire under s. 122.08(1) or s. 122.28, whichever is applicable, if the high hazard member has attained normal retirement age which shall be 55 for persons who had become a member prior to July 1, 1963, and age 57 for persons who had or shall become a member on or after July 1, 1963. For the purpose of estimating the annual primary insurance amount under social security coverage under s. 122.28(3) for such high hazard member, the administrator shall estimate the primary insurance amount as the amount the member shall be entitled to receive at the later of age 62 or the member’s retirement age.
(4) Any high hazard member within the contemplation of this section who has been classified as a “high hazard” member for the last 8 years or more of his or her employment, who is serving as a high hazard member, and who has made the additional contributions to the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund provided in subsection (2) for a period of not less than 5 years or who makes total contributions in amount equal to 5 years of contributions based on his or her then-current rate of earnings may retire under s. 122.08(2)(b) or s. 122.28, whichever is applicable, if the high hazard member has attained the age of 50 years or more and is not eligible to retire in accordance with the provisions of subsection (3).
(5) Any high hazard member who becomes eligible to retire under any other section of this chapter shall not receive a refund of the additional 2.5-percent contributions provided for in this section unless he or she requests in writing to the division a lump-sum refund of all his or her contributions to the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund in lieu of monthly retirement benefits. However, any high hazard member who changes position or is reclassified or otherwise becomes ineligible for classification as a “high hazard” member for any reason before retiring, or before becoming eligible to retire under any other section of this chapter shall lose all benefits under this section and may receive a refund of the additional 2.5-percent contribution without interest or leave the additional 2.5-percent contribution in the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund pending reclassification as a “high hazard” member; provided further, should any member receive a refund and be reinstated as a high hazard member, he or she shall pay into the State and County Officers and Employees’ Retirement Trust Fund the full amount refunded plus 3 percent interest compounded annually from date of refund until July 1, 1975, and thereafter at the rate of 6.5 percent interest compounded annually to date of repayment. Should such member apply for another refund before such payment is made, the interest on the first refund shall be deducted from the second refund, interest to be figured from date of first refund through date of second application for refund, at 3 percent interest compounded annually until July 1, 1975, and thereafter at the rate of 6.5 percent interest compounded annually.
(6)(a) The surviving spouse of any high hazard member hereafter killed in the line of duty shall receive a monthly pension equal to one-half the monthly salary drawn by the deceased member at the time of death for the rest of his or her life, unless he or she remarries, in which case the pension shall terminate at the date of the remarriage.
(b) Any sums of money which would have accrued to such surviving spouse had he or she lived until the 18th birthday of such high hazard member’s youngest child shall accrue, share and share alike, for the use and benefit of such member’s child or children under 18 years of age and unmarried during such minority. Such sums, as the same would have accrued to such surviving spouse, shall be paid to the legal guardian of the estate of such child or children, or either of them, during such minority to age 18 years.
(c) In determining the amount of pension to be received under this section, the benefits received in the form of workers’ compensation and social security shall be considered, and the total monthly compensation shall not exceed one-half of the salary received by the deceased high hazard member at the time of death. Should such total compensation exceed one-half of the monthly salary drawn by the deceased member at the time of death, the pension herein provided for shall be reduced by the amount of such excess.
(7) Any high hazard member who becomes totally disabled as a result of occupation while in the performance of duty shall be retired and shall receive, in addition to the award made to him or her under the Workers’ Compensation Law, an annual pension payable monthly in an amount equal to not less than 45 percent of the annual salary of the member at the time of his or her disability, and he or she shall continue to receive the said pension so long as such disability exists.
(8) Any high hazard member who becomes partially disabled as a result of occupation while in the performance of duty shall be retired and shall receive, in addition to the award made to him or her under the Workers’ Compensation Law, an annual pension payable monthly in an amount equal to not less than 35 percent of the annual salary of the member at the time of his or her disability, and he or she shall continue to receive the said pension so long as such disability exists.
(9) The term “total disability” shall be construed to mean any high hazard member who has been declared permanently totally disabled under the provisions of chapter 440 as a result of occupation while in the performance of duty.
(10) The term “partial disability” shall be construed to mean any high hazard member who has been declared permanently partially disabled under the provisions of chapter 440 as a result of occupation while in the performance of duty.
(11) No high hazard member shall be permitted to receive benefits under this section until examined by a duly qualified physician or surgeon, or board of physicians and surgeons, to be selected by the Governor for that purpose, and found to be disabled in the degree and in the manner specified in this section. At such time as the Department of Management Services directs, any high hazard member receiving disability benefits under this section shall submit to a medical examination to determine if such disability has continued, and the cost of such examination shall be paid from the retirement trust fund herein provided for; and in the event it is declared by said examination that said disability has cleared, such member shall be ordered to return to active duty with the same rank and salary that he or she had at the time of disability. Any such member who shall fail to return to duty following such order shall forfeit all rights and claims under this law. Every high hazard member retiring under this provision shall be paid so long as the member’s permanent total or partial disability continues, on his or her own requisition.
History.s. 6, ch. 63-555; ss. 6, 7, ch. 65-484; ss. 1, 2, ch. 67-193; ss. 2, 3, ch. 67-371; s. 1, ch. 69-347; ss. 31, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 73-326; s. 7, ch. 74-328; s. 1, ch. 77-174; s. 59, ch. 79-40; s. 67, ch. 92-279; s. 55, ch. 92-326; s. 794, ch. 95-147; s. 7, ch. 95-154; s. 67, ch. 99-255.