Social Security benefits


Q.  I’m a current civil service employee under CSRS with almost 40 years of employment.  I may retire next year and am currently 64 years old.  My question is, can I collect my deceased husband’s Social Security benefits?  He worked in the private sector.  If not, please explain why?

A. If you are still working, you’d be entitled to a reduced Social Security survivor benefit at age 60; however, when you retire, you’d be subject to the government pension offset provision of law. The GPO will reduce that survivor benefit by $2 for every $3 you receive in your CSRS annuity.


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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