Three annuities


Q. I retired from the military with full retirement in 1995. I think I understand that I cannot buy back any military time without forfeiting retirement pay when I retire from my federal job with the post office. Since the money comes out of my pocket, I have a hard time understanding this. However, I will have 20 years of service with the post office in 2017, when I am 56. If I take retirement, then why will I have a MRA+10 reduction till age 62 if I can retire fully at 60 with 20? Why would it be 30 percent instead of only 20 percent? Also, with the military pension and postal retirement, if Social Security is still around, how will this affect my annuity? Will I be able to pull all three full annuities?

A. If you retire at age 56 and have only 20 years of service, you’ll be retiring under the MRA+10 provision. As such, your annuity will be reduced by 5 percent for every year you are under age 62. You can, of course, reduce or eliminate that penalty by postponing the receipt of your annuity. Assuming you don’t make a deposit for your active-duty service and waive your military retired pay, you’ll be able to continue to receive that, your FERS annuity and a Social Security benefit beginning at age 62 that reflects all of your Social Security-covered service.


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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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