CSRS offset/Social Security


Q. I am a 58 year old CSRS offset employee and have 30 years and some months of creditable service. I started with the post office in 1980 as a sub mail carrier and converted to full time in 1986. I understand that when I retire and reach age 62 (if I am retired prior to then) my pension would be reduced by the amount of Social Security I would receive that is creditable to my CSRS offset service. How would I determine what that amount would be? And would I receive additional Social Security benefits from work outside the post office? The first year I paid in to Social Security was in 1969 and I had income every year until I started with the post office. Then when I was working for the post office I also farmed on the side until 2007 (when I retired from farming) and I was paying additional Social Security taxes on that income. So if I would be entitled to additional Social Security from my work outside of my CSRS offset service, how would I figure what that amount would be or who would be able to inform me?

P.S. If I retired before 62 years old and earned over $14,160 from another job or farming would my CSRS offset be reduced by $1 for every $2 earned, the same as after I reached 62 and part of the pension was coming from Social Security?

A. If you are retired, at  age 62 your CSRS annuity will be offset by the amount of Social Security benefit you earned while covered by CSRS offset. If you retire after reaching age 62, the reduction will occur on the day you retire. There’s a simple formula for estimating the amount of the reduction: take the latest Social Security benefit statement provided by the Social Security Administration and multiply it by your years of CSRS offset service rounded to the nearest whole number. Then divide the product by 40. Any additional Social Security benefit to which you are entitled based on other employment won’t be affected.

The Social Security earnings limit to which you referred only applies to if you are receiving a Social Security benefit. Earnings that exceed the limit might affect the Social Security benefit you are receiving based on your CSRS offset service. It depends on how much additional Social Security benefit you are getting that’s based on your non-CSRS offset service.




About Author

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

Leave A Reply