Q. My wife was a CSRS clerk for the Postal Service for 30 years, and on June 30, 2009, she retired at age 54 under a VERA and lost 2 percent because she was younger than 55. Two months after she retired, the Postal Service offered a VSIP of $15,000 to any clerk who wanted to retire because they didn’t get the numbers they were looking for. Would she be entitled to the $15,000 because she left under a VERA?

A. No. The purpose of the Voluntary Separation Incentive Payment law is to encourage employees to retire, not to reward them for having done so.


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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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