Critical Shortage Employment

Critical Shortage Employment is a legal provision that allows PEERS retirees to work after retirement at covered employers while continuing to receive PEERS service retirement benefits. To be employed under this provision, your employer must certify with PEERS that there is a critical shortage of qualified applicants for the position, and that they have met the necessary requirements to declare a critical shortage.

If you work after retirement for a covered employer that has declared a critical shortage, you can work for up to 48 months without losing your PEERS benefits. The 48 months of employment do not have to be consecutive - there can be breaks in the employment. However, you cannot work more than 48 months total under this provision throughout your retirement. You do not pay PEERS contributions or earn service while working under this provision.

If you work full-time for a PEERS-covered employer, but are not working under Critical Shortage Employment, your benefits will stop. Learn More »

If you work under this provision and also work in an additional position(s) that is not covered by the Critical Shortage as certified by your employer, the additional position(s) is subject to the separate working after retirement limit(s) that apply.


Gina is retired and returns to work for a PEERS-covered school district as a bus driver under Critical Shortage Employment. In addition, she will provide clerical help in the school office.

Under the Critical Shortage provision, Gina is limited to working a maximum of 48 months as a bus driver.

Her work as an office clerk is limited to a maximum of 550 hours per school year, since it is not part of her Critical Shortage employment.

An employer can hire up to 10% of the non-certificated staff, not to exceed five individual PEERS retirees, to work under this provision. Employers cannot use the Critical Shortage provision to fill the position of superintendent.

In order to employ retirees under this provision, the employer must:

  • Not have offered early retirement incentives for either of the previous two school years
  • Post the vacancy or vacancies for at least one month
  • Solicit applications through the local newspaper or other media
  • Make a good faith effort to fill positions with non-retired employees
  • Determine that there is an insufficient number of eligible applicants for the advertised position(s)
  • Declare a shortage of certificated or non-certificated employees