Military service retirement plus civilian retirement


Q: I served for 27 years in the Navy and so earned retirement annuity. After a few years in the private sector, I was hired under the National Security Personnel System on August 4, 2008. At the time of my hire they awarded me partial credit for military service and gave me the service commencement date of July 4, 1992. In was born in 1955. The FERS retirement calculator says that I would therefore be retirement eligible as soon as July 4, 2012. Should I elect to retire at his point or a date after that, will I earn both retirements in full? If not, what will be offered when I retire from the civilian DOD position?

A: Some retired members of the armed forces may receive credit for certain periods of active duty service in determining their leave accumulation rate, which is reflected in their service computation date. However, that time isn’t generally creditable for retirement purposes unless a deposit is made to the civilian retirement system and, at retirement, the retired military pay is waived. If you didn’t do that, you’d be able to keep your military retired pay. Then in 2012 when you reach your minimum retirement age (56) and have 20 years of FERS service, you could retire under the MRA+10 provision (minimum retirement age with at least 10 years of service but fewer than 30). Your FERS annuity would be reduced by 5 percent for every year you are under age 62, unless you retired and postponed the receipt of your annuity to a later date.


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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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