The final word on work-year hours


Q: I am a postal inspector under the Civil Service Retirement System. I plan on retiring with more than 2,500 hours of sick leave. The Office of Personnel Management shows a sick leave conversion chart rate based on 2,087 hours a year. The Postal Service human resources department uses a chart based on 2,080 a year. Upon retirement, does OPM accept the Postal Service conversion rate, or do they calculate based on their own conversion chart? Is there a reason the Postal Service uses a different conversion chart?

A: By law, a work year is 2,087 hours long. OPM will credit any unused sick leave using that number. If you have more than 2,087 hours of sick leave, go back to the beginning of the chart and start over.


About Author

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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