Deferred annuity under FERS


Q. I have 14 years of federal service and resigned in July 2011 to enter the private sector. When I resigned, I was 52 and under FERS. When can I apply for my deferred annuity, and do I have the option of taking it earlier than age 62? I also understand that if I elected to take it earlier than 62, I would be penalized 5 percent per year based on what age I elect to take it (starting at 56).

A. Your only option is to apply for a deferred annuity at age 62. Your understanding that you could apply for one earlier than that was based on a misconception. Only employees who have reached their minimum retirement age and have at least 10 years of service can retire and receive a reduced annuity.


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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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