Retired military, buyback and FERS


Q. I am a retired chief petty officer with 17½ years of service. I am an information technician specialist under the Federal Employees Retirement System. I am buying my military time back and will have it paid off shortly. I have a couple of questions:

1. Will my military retirement check stop as soon as I pay the military deposit off, or does it stop when I retire from the federal government?

2. Part of my military retirement goes to the Veterans Affairs for my 30 percent service-connected disability, which is then sent back to me from the VA. Do I lose my 30 percent service-connected disability along with my military retirement, or do I continue to receive my VA service-connected disability when I retire from the federal government?

3. If I decide I do not want to combine my military and federal time, can I choose not to? By when do I need to make that decision? What happens to the military deposit I paid in?

4. Lastly, what policies or directives can I refer to in looking for these answers?

A. You will have to waive your military retired pay when you retire, not before that. At that time, only your military retired pay will be waived, not your VA benefit.


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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