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Former NFL Running Back O.J. Simpson. Photo Credit: Charles LeBlanc – Under Creative Commons License

How Much Money Did O.J. Simpson Make From His Pension?

Ten years ago, O.J. Simpson was arrested for his involvement in a robbery at the Palace Station Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. Bruce Fromong, a sports memorabilia dealer, testified that Simpson and a group of men broke into his hotel room and stole several pieces of sports memorabilia at gunpoint. During the trial, Simpson admitted to taking the items but claimed the items were stolen from HIM and also denied breaking in and using any weapons.

On October 3, 2008, which was 13 years to the day he was acquitted of a double murder, O.J. Simpson was found guilty of all ten charges and sentenced to 33 years in prison with the possibility of parole after nine years at Lovelock Correctional Center in Lovelock, Nevada. Now almost nine years later, on July 20, 2017, O.J. was granted parole and is now eligible for release as early as October 1, 2017.

But he won’t be leaving prison empty handed. O.J. Simpson was making either $4,034 or $10,565. The reason behind this is the NFL pension plan, which has a somewhat complicated formula. The NFL calculates pensions based on how many seasons were played and at what age the player decides to start collecting. According to, the formula breaks down like this:

NFL players who played before 1982 get a pension credit of $250 per a season per a month. Simpson played 11 seasons which comes out to $2,750 a month. Then in 2011, a settlement gave former players an extra payment of $124 per a month per a season for seasons played before 1975 and $108 per a month per a season in subsequent years. This gave Simpson an extra $1,284. Adding the two, that comes out to $4,034 a month. But if Simpson waited until he was 65, instead of 55, to start collecting, he got a multiplier of 2.619 which comes out to $10,565 a month.

The pension plan has netted the now 70-year-old O.J. Simpson either $423,570 or $602,205 over the past 10-15 years in and out of prison. Simpson’s lawyer reported that the football star has money from the pension plan in which he invested $5 million years ago. Simpson played the 11 seasons, between 1969 to 1979, for the Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers. O.J. Simpson’s pension is, by any measure, a pretty great retirement package. But for most NFL players, the number won’t be that high.

Now the average player only plays for 3.5 seasons in the league and most need their pension as soon as they have access to it. One out of every six NFL retirees declares for bankruptcy. Now the league offers generous 401(k)’s to help motivate players to save their money.

Despite being a great retirement plan, O.J. still has a serious debt to pay. Despite being acquitted of double murder in 1995, a civil court ordered Simpson to pay a very sizable fee to the families of his late ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ronald L Goldman, for compensatory and punitive damages.

Fortunately for Simpson, he’s not legally obligated to use his pension to pay that fee off since the pension is protected by state law thus making it exempt from the civil judgment.

Bryan Hernandez

Author Bryan Hernandez

Grew up and currently living in Southern California. Former baseball utility player. Currently a film major. Passion for all things sports including Dodgers, Kings, Lakers, Galaxy, USC and Patriots. Avid follower of the Trailblazers and Senators.

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