Phased Retirement


Phased Retirement Guidelines

Questions concerning the phased retirement program in the College of Liberal Arts should be directed to the CLA Office of Human Resources at clahr@umn.edu.


The College of Liberal Arts participates in the University's Phased Retirement Program for eligible tenured faculty and academic professionals with continuous appointment.

Governing Document

The Phased Retirement Program is a voluntary internal University retirement program designed to facilitate change within units by providing compensation in return for tenure or continuous appointment resignation. Tenured faculty and academic professionals with continuous appointment considering a phased retirement are encouraged to consult with their unit chair/director and to meet with an Employee Benefits Counselor prior to initiating the required documentation.

CLA Guidelines

At levels proportional to their paid appointment, tenured faculty on phased retirement are expected to maintain an active program of scholarly research or other creative work, to engage with students through teaching and advising, and to participate in appropriate service and governance activities throughout the period covered by the phased retirement agreement.

Academic professionals with continuous appointment on phased retirement are expected to fulfill the duties and responsibilities of their position throughout the period covered by the phased retirement agreement, at levels proportional to their paid appointment.

Phased retirement agreement forms must accurately record the period of the phased retirement and the percent-time leave of absence without pay. Phased retirements must be scheduled to correspond to the dates of the employee's regular appointment (B-term; A-term). To ensure consistency with college workload policies and practices, the percent-time leave of absence without pay must be reflected in 25% increments.

Faculty should work with their unit administrator and payroll team to determine the payroll deadline for submitting phased retirement agreements.  Effective July 1, 2016, CLA will approve phased retirement agreements for a maximum period of a three-year phase; request for 4 or 5 year phased retirement agreements will be returned to departments for revision.

Completed phased retirement agreement forms should be submitted to the CLA Office of Human Resources at clahr@umn.edu. Release forms and benefits election forms are to be forwarded directly to Employee Benefits.

Letter from Chair/Director

Consistent with the University's procedures, the college asks that the unit chair/director provide a cover letter to accompany each phased retirement agreement. The cover letter must demonstrate that the proposed phased retirement is in the best interest of the University and in keeping with specific programmatic goals or other special circumstances.

For tenured faculty, the cover letter should address the impact of the phased retirement on the curricular needs and programmatic goals of the unit. The letter should describe the faculty member's anticipated engagement across the full spectrum of faculty duties and responsibilities, including scholarly research or other creative work, teaching and advising, and service and outreach during the period covered by the phased retirement.

For academic professionals with continuous appointment, the cover letter should address the impact of the phased retirement on the programmatic goals of the unit. The letter should describe the staff member's anticipated engagement across the full range of the position's duties and responsibilities during the period covered by the phased retirement.

Administrative Policy, Procedures, Forms

The University's administrative policy and corresponding procedures and forms for the Phased Retirement Program may be found in the Policy Library.

    CLA Guidelines Effective November 2008