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A Defined Contribution Plan administered by OPERS

Pathfinder is the mandatory defined contribution plan for eligible state employees who first become employed by a participating employer on or after November 1, 2015, and have no prior participation in OPERS before that date.

A defined contribution plan like Pathfinder provides an employer match to help you save for retirement. The amount a participant has at retirement under a defined contribution plan is dependent upon how much was contributed over the participant’s career, how well those investments performed, and how quickly distributions are taken in retirement.

How does it work

Under this plan, participants choose a contribution rate which is matched by their employer up to 7%, and participants have the freedom to select and change their investments.

Pathfinder is composed of a 401(a) Plan for mandatory and matching contributions and a 457(b) Plan for additional voluntary contributions. With each paycheck you make a mandatory contribution of 4.5% of your pretax salary to the 401(a) Plan. Your employer also contributes 6% of your pretax salary into the plan. Contributions and any earnings grow on a tax-deferred basis until money is withdrawn, usually during retirement.

You can do more to get more!

You can receive another 1% employer-matching contribution to your 401(a) Plan when you contribute 2.5% or more to your voluntary 457(b) Plan. That’s a total 14% contribution to your Pathfinder retirement accounts. Now, that is a match!

Employee Contribution Employer Match Total Contribution
Mandatory 4.5% 6.0% 10.5%
Less than 7.0% 6.0% Up to 12.9%
7.0% or Above 7.0% 14% +

How do I manage my account?

You can manage your account online at, by downloading the Empower app or by calling the voice response system at 844-465-7284:

  • Access your account balance and see your estimated monthly retirement income
  • Increase your contributions
  • Manage or transfer among investment options
  • Review recent activity, account statements and notices
  • View and update beneficiaries
  • Initiate incoming rollovers or distributions
  • Meet with your Pathfinder Retirement Plan Counselor

Plan Documents

Get the mobile app to view and manage your plan anywhere, any time. Download the Empower app at
Google Play or App Store.

Leaving Employment or Retiring

Use the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) Calculator to understand when you will be required to begin withdrawing from your retirement savings and how much you will need to withdraw each year.

Pathfinder has a contract with the Empower Annuity Insurance Company of America for recordkeeping and account management services. The products and services offered in the retirement markets of Empower Annuity Insurance Company of America for the Plan are branded as Empower.

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