Social Security advanced benefits


Q: I was told that if I retire from the USPS with 30 years of service but only at 59 1/2 years of age, I’m entitled to my FERS full retirement benefits as well as a 35 percent advanced payment from Social Security until I reach age 62, and then I will get the full amount by age 62. Is this true?

A: No, it isn’t. It’s a garbled account of what the law provides. Because you will meet the age and service requirements to retire on an immediate annuity, in addition to your FERS annuity, you will receive a special retirement supplement that approximates the Social Security benefit you earned while employed under FERS. The SRS will continue to be paid until you reach age 62 when your regular Social Security benefit kicks in. If you have earnings from wages or self-employment that exceed the annual Social Security earnings limit, your SRS will be reduced or even eliminated.


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Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to

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