Monthly Archives: February, 2012

Disability retirement

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Q. I was approved for disability retirement through FERS and was a part-time flexible carrier. Before I was separated, I was converted to full time in May. In July, my disability annuity was approved by OPM. My annuity payment was reduced as a part time. Does being a part-time employee but doing 40 hours a week throughout my employment and converting to full time before OPM’s approval entitle me to get benefits as a full-time employee? Can they do this knowing I worked full-time hours all the time? Also what about hours paid from Office of Workers’ Compensation Program (OWCP)…

LWOP and FERS contribution

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Q. Several years ago, I was granted 16 months of leave without pay for a medical condition. While I was on LWOP, I made no contributions to FERS so I assume I should notify my Human Resources Office to buy back this time. Is this correct? If so, is there a specific form to complete? I recently bought back 25 months of active-duty military service so I assume LWOP would be handled in a similar manner. A. An aggregate nonpay status of six months in any calendar year is creditable service. Coverage continues at no cost to you while in…

FERS disability retirement

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Q. I was placed on a FERS disability retirement by the FAA after suffering a stroke in 2005. The FAA revoked my class II medical, otherwise I would be able to return to my previous position. All my work for the FAA was conducted in either Kansas or Utah. In 2008, I obtained a job with a private company in N.J. In 2011, I was terminated and I requested unemployment benefits. The New Jersey unemployment office is stating I am not entitled to unemployment benefits due to my FERS retirement. Is this true? A. Because this isn’t a question about…

Survivor annuity

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Q. I am a FERS employee. When I retire, I do not wish to name my spouse for a survivor annuity because I do not want my annuity reduced. (She has a secure financial plan in place). However, I do want her to continue to be included in my FEHB plan after I retire. I am currently enrolled in a family option. I was told that she cannot be included in my health benefit package (after my retirement) unless I at least partially name her for a survivor annuity. Is this true? A. You are required by law to provide…

RIF and retirement

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Q. In a recent post,  you answer that if given a specific reduction in force notice and you have the combination of age and service needed for immediate or early retirement, you can retire. Would this be the minimum retirement age and or age 50 with 20 years of service? Will this incur any penalty? A. If given a specific RIF notice, you can take early retirement if you meet one of the age and service combinations: age 50 with 20 years service or at any age with 25. If you are a FERS employee, there won’t be any age penalty…

FEHB and Medicare after 65

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Q. I am 65, employed at the U.S. Postal Service and applying for Medicare Ppart A but not Part B. I am confused after reading in the FEHB benefits brochure from several plans: “When you are age 65 or over and do not have Medicare …” That sound like if I do not take Medicare Part B, plans will pay less benefits and I will be paying more. There is a benefit to taking Part B, but the monthly premium negates it. I am afraid they pay only what Medicare pays and I will be left paying the difference. A.…

WEP question

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Q: I was an attorney for the government from 1976 to 1982. I withdrew a lump-sum retirement and have not/will not refund deposit. I worked from 1982 to 2002 in the private sector, during which I had substantial earnings and paid applicable Social Security. In 2002 I returned to a federal job and hope to retire in November. By then I will have about 15 years of federal service of which 10 years I paid both Social Security and CSRS offset. Am I safe in assuming that I wil not suffer WEP? A: The fact that you took a refund…

GS leave while mobilized

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Q: I am a civilian GS employee and an active reservist. I am getting deployed to Afghanistan for about 100 days. I was wondering if I am allowed to use any/all/combination of my military leave, civilian regular leave or sick leave while I am deployed. This would allow me to get my GS salary as well as my Army salary at the same time. My GS salary is more than my active-duty salary will be. A: You may take military leave (the 15 days granted each year for training), annual leave or LWOP-US. You may not use sick leave. For…

No step increase

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Q: I have a little more than 11 years of military active-duty time and two years FERS time in law enforcement. I’m going to send off my RI 20-97 in a day or two. If I make a lump-sum payment, will my GS-6 step 3 (current pay grade) increase to a step 8 (pay grade at 13 years service)? A: No, it won’t. However, making the deposit will increase your length of service and be used in your annuity computation when you retire.

Back to work

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Q: I was employed by the federal government between August 1983 and September 1999. At the time I left civil service, I withdrew contributions of $50,000. I have been offered a position with the federal government again. I am now 64. If I accept the position, will I be eligible for a pension? How many years would I have to work? Am I eligible for redeposit of funds? A: In order to get credit for your prior service, you would have to redeposit that money plus accumulated interest. If you did so, you’d be eligible for an immediate annuity because…

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