Considering VERA


Q. I’m considering taking the next VERA offer in May. I’m a FERS employee with 17 years of service and am age 61. I also have 11 years of NAF service with no break in service. I never made any sort of selection of credit for my NAF retirement, so I’m assuming I made a FERS selection by default. My servicing agency tells me that I cannot take both my NAF retirement, which I paid into, and my FERS retirement should I decide to take the VERA. That just doesn’t sound right to me. Is my servicing agency correct?

A. Even though you are 61 years old, you wouldn’t be eligible for early retirement unless you had 20 years of service. If you have that many years (or more), it would be because you have been given credit for some of your NAF service. You’ll have to find out if that’s the case. Note: You were not placed in FERS by default. Because you were first hired after Jan. 1, 1987, you were automatically covered by FERS.

How your NAF benefits would be handled falls outside the boundaries of this forum, which is exclusively for federal civilian employees and retirees.


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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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