Buyback and military retirement


Q. I am a reservist eligible for an active-duty retirement (21 years active duty and four years reserve duty). I have not retired yet. If I obtain a federal civilian position prior to retiring from the Reserve, will I be eligible to buy back my 20+ years of active duty? Or does the fact that I am eligible for an active-duty retirement (i.e. will receive retired pay immediately after retiring from the Reserve) make me ineligible to buy back my military time?

A. Yes, you could make a deposit to get credit for your active-duty service. However, to get credit for it in your annuity computation when you retired from your civilian job, you’d have to waive your military retired pay.


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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