Select Page

Retiree Vision Benefits

Retiree Vision Benefits

As a State of California retiree, you are eligible to enroll in the state’s Retiree Vision Program, which is offered through VSP Vision. The Retiree Vision Program provides vision care coverage for you and your eligible dependents.

You have 60 days from the date of your retirement to enroll in a Retiree Vision Plan. Please work with your departmental personnel to assist you with enrollment options and check your eligibility. If you do not enroll within 60 days of your retirement date, your next opportunity to enroll in the Retire Vision Program will be the yearly open enrollment.

When you are newly enrolled in the Retiree Vision Plan, you will need to pay three months of premiums directly to VSP then automatic deductions from your CalPERS warrant are established. After the three-month period, premiums are deducted directly from your CalPERS retirement allowance.

It is important that to keep your home/mailing address current at all times for your VSP membership file and your CalPERS account, even if your retirement check is deposited directly to your bank account. An accurate mailing address ensures that you receive timely information regarding your state vision benefits that CalHR and VSP mail to you.

For updates to your VSP membership profile, please report address changes to VSP by calling the Customer Care at (800) 400-4569. Let them know you are a State of California Retiree and need to update your membership profile information.

If you are a retired state employee and have any questions regarding your eligibility, please contact VSP Customer Care at (800) 400-4569 or email


Frequently Asked Questions

When will retirees receive Open Enrollment and benefit information?

State of California retirees will receive Open Enrollment materials in the mail prior to the annual Open Enrollment period to help them choose their vision coverage.​

How do retirees enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan during Open Enrollment?

During Open Enrollment, retirees may enroll by choosing one of these convenient options:

When are the open enrollment changes effective?

The effective date for actions taken during Open Enrollment will be January 1st of the following year.

Do retirees need to reenroll in the Retiree Vision Plan every year?

No. Benefit coverage automatically continues unless the retiree cancels their plan during Open Enrollment after the minimum 12-month enrollment period has been completed.​

Will retirees be automatically enrolled in the Retiree Vision Plan?

No. Retirees must enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan within 60 days of retirement. Retirees can enroll through their departmental personnel office or enroll and make changes during annual Open Enrollment.

Is Retiree Vision coverage impacted or canceled if a retiree is enrolled in Medicare?

Retiree vision coverage is not impacted or canceled if a retiree is enrolled in Medicare.

A retiree may be enrolled in both the state Retiree Vision Plan as well as the Medicare vision plan if they choose to be.

What benefits does the plan cover?

For information about your vision plan, please visit​ the VSP website to view the evidence of coverage document. 

Will the Vision plan also cover retirees' dependents?

Yes. Eligible dependents may also be covered. Retirees will need to list dependent information on the enrollment form at the time of enrollment. Dependent children under the age of 26 are eligible for benefits.

What information do retirees need to provide to enroll dependents?

Retirees must provide each dependent’s name, social security number, date of birth, and relationship to the enrolled retiree.​

Are retirees able to enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan after Open Enrollment?

Retirees who do not enroll during Open Enrollment can enroll during the next Open Enrollment.

If a retiree elects COBRA for up to 18 months at the time of retirement, does the retiree have to wait until the next Open Enrollment to enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan?

No. The end of COBRA is considered a permitting event which allows the member to enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan within 60 days of the COBRA termination date. Contact CalHR at for more information.

When your 18 months end, you can visit the VSP website and select End of COBRA Enrollment Form. Complete the form and submit it directly to VSP by email to enroll in a Retiree Vision Plan.​

Once enrolled, can retirees cancel their Retiree Vision Plan coverage?

Once enrolled, retirees will be required to remain in the Retiree Vision Plan for a minimum of 12 months.

Retirees may cancel their plan during an annual Open Enrollment period if they have completed the 12-month minimum enrollment period. The cancellation is effective January 1 of the following year. Retirees may also cancel their plan coverage if they have a qualifying event.​

Are domestic partners eligible for Retiree Vision Plan coverage?

Yes. Registered domestic partners are eligible dependents.

Are disabled dependents eligible for Retiree Vision Plan coverage?

Yes. Registered disabled dependents are eligible.

Are California State University (CSU) members eligible for the State of California Retiree Vision Plan?

No. Only State of California (non-CSU) retirees and eligible dependents may enroll in these plans. CSU Retirees should contact CSU for additional information.

Can retirees be enrolled in multiple Vision plans?

Yes. A retiree can enroll in the Retiree Vision Plan and be enrolled in another vision plan.

Can retirees add dependents after Open Enrollment?

​​Retirees may add dependents after Open Enrollment only if a family status change (permitting event) as defined by the state has occurred. If a family status change has not occurred, retirees may add dependents during the next Open Enrollment.​

Does the Retiree Vision Plan have insurance I.D. cards?

No. VSP does not provide insurance I.D. cards. To use the VSP plan, the VSP member should select a VSP doctor, make an appointment and tell the doctor they are a VSP member. If retirees need help locating a VSP doctor, call VSP toll-free at (800) 400-4569 or log on to VSP’s website.​