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Public Educators

In addition to full comprehensive retirement planning we specialize in helping Public Educators with their retirement benefit package. Whether you are brand new to education and need to elect your benefits, in the midst of your career or preparing for your final days in the workplace it's important to understand how to maximize your employer-sponsored benefits.

Disclosure: Representatives of Opal Wealth Strategies do not represent and non-affiliated with Washington State TRS, SERS, PERS or DRS

New Educators


    If you are brand new to education there is a 90-day window to elect your State Pension Plan - either 2 or 3. This is an irrevocable decision and, therefore, should be a well-informed decision. Whether you are a classified or certified staff member, and fall under either the SERS or TRS plan, we walk you through the benefits and differences between each plan. Additionally, we educate you on all your employer-sponsored retirement benefits, including deferred compensation and 403(b) plans. Our goal is to help you determine how to take advantage and maximize each of these plans to meet your retirement goals.

Career Educators


    Building the right investment portfolio is just part of the process. Putting those portfolios into tax-advantaged plans is equally as important. In conjunction with the State mandated Pension Plan, Washington State offers public educators a supplemental deferred compensation plan. Additionally, most school districts provide their employees with supplemental 403(b) plans. Our objective is to guide you through all these tax-advantaged plans and coach you through setting them up to meet your goals.

Retiring Educators


    The earlier you begin planning for retirement, the more successful your retirement will be. During the retirement planning process we help navigate you through the countless decisions you'll encounter to seamlessly transition you from work to retirement.

    The most frequently asked questions by Public Educators include:

    • Cost-of-living-adjustments (COLA) - How does the COLA work for the State defined benefit and Social Security? What rates can I expect or plan for?
    • Survivorship Options - On the State defined benefit plan, what is the most prudent survivorship option to elect to protect my family? Does it even make sense to elect this benefit? Are there more cost-efficient solutions?
    • Social Security - Given my situation, are there any strategies with filing Social Security to maximize the benefit? 
    • Public Employee Benefit Board (PEBB) - With rising costs in healthcare what options are available to supplement Medicare?
    • VEBA Trust - What are the tax advantages of depositing my unused sick pay into the VEBA Trust versus cashing it out? What are the benefits and tax advantages of a health reimbursement account (HRA)?

    At OWS we offer the entire spectrum of financial services and solutions for your needs. Our goal is to help provide you with an educational experience, and that's why we hold your hand through the entire process.