Q. I have two questions if you don’t mind.
1. When I retired (CSRS), I elected full survivor benefits for my wife. Will her survivor benefit be based on the amount of my annuity when I retired or when I died?
2. With all the talk of private retirement funds being decimated by the economic downturn, is there any way of knowing or determining how financially solvent the CSRS retirement fund is?
A. If you were to die before your wife, she would receive 55 percent of the annuity you would have received if you hadn’t elected a survivor annuity, increased by every cost-of-living adjustment you’ve gotten on your annuity up to the day you died. And her survivor annuity will be increased by every cost-of-living adjustment that occurs up to her death.