CSRS eligibility


Q: In 1977, I worked for the National Park Service for three months during college summer break. Then in 1991, I started working for the federal government and I am still here. In 1991, they put me in FERS and added three months to my SCD for the college time. Can I now tell them that, since I really started working in 1977, I should be in CSRS, and they should switch me to that system?

A: Sure, you can tell them that. But you better stand back because they are going to fall on the floor laughing. Here’s why. When you went back to work for the federal government, you could only have been placed in CSRS if you had five years of service under that retirement system. Even if you did have five years, you’d have been placed in CSRS Offset, because your break in service exceeded a year.


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.

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