Monthly Archives: July, 2011

Disability retirement

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Q: I am a former CSRS employee who is receiving disability retirement from the government. I just turned 55. Will this change to regular retirement (I had the 30 year requirement). If so, what is the difference? A: As a disability retiree under CSRS, you will continue to have to provide proof of your disability until age 60. At that point, you will be considered permanently disabled. Your disability annuity won’t be changed to a regular annuity.

Credit for temporary service

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Q: I worked in a federal job as a temporary employee from October 1979 to January 1987. I paid only Social Security since temporary employees were not allowed to participate in CSRS. I was hired as a Career-Conditional FERS employee in June 2010. I am looking to pay a deposit to get credit for my years of temporary service. Can any of that service give me a CSRS annuity component even though I never participated in CSRS? A: No.

Buying back time

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Q: I need to know how to buy my military time back, how much it cost and where to send the forms. A: Go to the Ask the Experts site, click on the heading “Read more” and on the right hand column click on “Creditable service: FERS,” then scroll down to “Counting military service toward retirement,” dated October 25, 2010. If, by chance, you are a CSRS employee rather than CSRS, use a Standard Form 2803 instead of the 3108.

Retirement or disability

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Q: I work for the DHS/TSA. I am 58 and have worked there for seven years. I fell at work four years ago and have been on workers’compensation since that time. I get cortisone injections but it is becoming more difficult to overcome the pain. I have been working most of the time since then. I am at home now waiting for another injection. Can I retire early and if so, where do I start? Would I ‘retire early’ or apply for disability? A: Even if your agency was offering an opportunity to its employees to retire early, you don’t…

Special retirement

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Q: I served in the Air National Guard full-time WG-12 technician from March 1993 until January 2003 when I was deemed medically ineligible. I performed the same duties when doing military time as I did as a FERS employee but was given an OPM disability retirement because I lost my military status. I learned that there is Special Retirement Supplement to disability payments for law enforcement and military reserve technicians which is intended to bridge the income gap until Social Security eligibility is reached. Should I have been receiving this supplemental pay for the past eight years and would a…

Carryover ceiling

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Q: After working 26 years for the U.S. Postal Service, I transferred to the Defense Department. Postal service employees have a higher annual leave carryover limit than other federal sectors. I have 466 hours of annual leave and the max carry-over for DoD is 240. Will I lose all annual leave hours in excess of 240 if not used by December 31st? A: According to OPM, “The Postal Service Reorganization Act provides that an employee transferring between the USPS and other agencies may not lose benefits if the employee transfers without a break in service. The employee is entitled to…

Injury and buying back military time

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Q: I was an Air Force reservist on orders for six months back in October 2006. I injured myself while on active duty and the six-month orders turned into two years. I was put on the “Permanent Disability Retired List with a 30 percent disability (noncombat related). I served 29 years in the Air Force Reserve with a total of four years and eight months of active duty. I was hired in October 2008 as a federal employee. I am in the process of buying back/military deposit those four years and eight months. I attended a FERS retirement seminar recently…

Buying back military time

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Q: If I pay about $4,000 I will have my 12 years of military service counted. I got hurt at my federal job, and I am thinking about asking for FERS disability. The problem is, I am a month shy of the 18 months required. Can I only pay a portion of the $4,000 (to have the month required), or do I have to pay the whole amount? Are we allowed to just pay part of the buyback money? A: First, you have to have 18 months of creditable civilian service under FERS to be eligible to apply for disability…

COLA eligibility

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Q: I will be 75 Oct. 28. I am in CSRS and have been working at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for 39 years. I plan to retire on Oct. 30. Will I be eligible for the COLA (if there is any) in January of next year? Also, on which day, Sept. 30 or Oct. 30, would it be better for me to retire? A: If there is a cost-of-living adjustment and you retire at the end of September, you’ll be on the annuity roll in October and receive 1/6th of that COLA. If you retire at the end of September,…

Affected by WEP?

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Q: Does the Windfall Elimination Provision apply to anyone in CSRS Offset who is 55 or older and has 30-plus years of service upon retirement? A: The windfall elimination provision applies to anyone who is receiving an annuity – in whole or part – from a retirement system where he didn’t pay Social Security taxes and has fewer tha 30 years of substantial earnings under Social Security.

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