Q: After 11 years working for the Defense Department, I left my government job in 2000 and worked in the private sector. I would like to know if am eligible to receive my pension benefits. If yes, how is my pension calculated? I am 57. When am I eligible to start receiving benefits?
A: As a former FERS employee, if you left your contributions in the retirement fund, you would be eligible for an deferred annuity now under the MRA+10 provision of law (minimum retirement age with at least 10 but fewer than 30 years of service). However, your annuity would be reduced by 5 percent for every year you were under age 62 when you began receiving it. To reduce or eliminate the age penalty, you could, of course, retire and defer the receipt of your annuity to a later date.
The formula for computing a FERS annuity is as follows: 0.01 x your highest three consecutive years of average salary x all your years and full months of service.