Colorado PERA Retirement Considerations Presentation

I was asked to give a presentation to the high school I used to work at regarding some things to be thinking about as you near retirement with a benefit from Colorado PERA. It was a virtual presentation, and given during their lunch time, so it was rather hurried but I hope it was useful to them. Since I’ve already created the slides and had a chance to present it twice, I thought it would make sense to go ahead and record it and post it online in case others found it helpful.

First, some caveats. I am not a financial planner. I have no formal qualifications around retirement, investing or financial planning, I’m just a lifelong learner who feels like I have some valuable information to share. Having said that, I obviously think that everything I’m sharing in this presentation is correct, and I don’t think very many people would find anything “controversial” in the presentation but, as always, use your common sense. If something doesn’t make sense to you, or doesn’t feel right, trust your gut.

Second, this is a very high level overview of these topics. It does not cover all the nuances and specifics of PERA benefits and policy, or all the different factors to think about in retirement (both financial and emotional). And keep in mind that PERA benefits – as well as how your school district handles things – can change. Please don’t think this is the entirety of what you need to know when thinking about retirement.

As I mention in the presentation, feel free to reach out if you have questions or would like to look more closely at your finances (not financial advice, but financial education). That can include questions about PERA but, in general, it’s always best to ask specific questions about PERA to PERA themselves, as they know much more about all the nuances than I do.

Here are some links that go along with the presentation:


Colorado Book for PERA Members

Books for Other States

Fisch Learning

3 thoughts on “Colorado PERA Retirement Considerations Presentation

  1. Hi Carl,

    I have a question regarding working after retirement. As a Colorado retiree getting a Pera pension, I now work as an independent contractor and have been for the last 3 years. I’m paying self employment taxes into Social security in addition to medicare. If I will not ever benefit from a social security pension, is there a way to exempt myself from paying this into social security?


    1. Not that I’m aware of. If, however, you end up with at least 10 years (40 quarters) of earning under Social Security (could include high school, college, second job when working for PERA, independent contractor, etc.), you will receive a Social Security benefit.


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