Creditable service


Q. I am in FERS with a CSRS component, and I’m planning to retire in April 2013 after more than 35 years of continuous government service. Prior to working for the Defense Department in 1975, I had worked a  summer in the post office with all the taxes paid, including Social Security. Would I be able to pay a FERS deposit for the two or three months I’ve worked at the post office and get credit for the FERS retirement annuity?

Below is the info from the ABC-C website:

FERS deposit service is any period of Federal civilian service performed before Jan. 1, 1989, during which FERS retirement deductions were not withheld from your pay. Generally, this would be service under temporary and WAE appointments. It also includes Peace Corps and VISTA service no matter when it was performed.

The amount of a FERS deposit equals 1.3 percent of the basic pay earned during the period of deposit service, plus interest. Interest on FERS deposits is charged at the variable market rate.

If you pay the FERS deposit, you will receive full credit for the period(s) of deposit service. If you do not pay the deposit, the service is not creditable for retirement eligibility or annuity computation purposes.

If you want to pay a FERS deposit, you must obtain SF 3108, Application to Make Service Credit Payment, from your human resources office. You will need to complete the form and mail it to the Office of Personnel Management. OPM calculates the amount of deposit, and sends you a statement of what you owe. You must send payment(s) directly to OPM, and payments must be completed before you retire. Partial deposits are not permitted.

A. Whether that period of service is creditable will depend on the nature of the appointment you had. To find out, you’ll have to go to and scroll down to Page 94, POSTAL SERVICE, U.S.

If it is creditable, that credit would be applied to the CSRS component of your annuity. And, because the service was performed before Oct. 1, 1982, you’d get credit for it in determining your total length of service. Further, if you chose not to make a deposit for that time, your annuity would be reduced by 10 percent of the amount you owe, plus accrued interest. If you did decide to make a deposit for that time, you’d have to use Standard Form 2803.


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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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