CSRS Offset and Medicare


Q. I am a CSRS Offset, retired in 2008 with 30 years of service. I will turn 65 in September. I have several medical conditions that require long-term care. I was told by the Office of Personnel Management that I would have to give up my federal medical coverage and take Medicare. If that is the case, I would prefer to keep my federal medical coverage. What are my options? Can I refuse Medicare? And what are the repercussions of that decision?

A. What you heard was nonsense. You don’t have to give up your Federal Employees Health Benefits program coverage to be eligible for Medicare Part A benefits. You earned that coverage through payroll deductions. If you also want to be covered by Part B, you’d need to enroll in that and pay the premiums.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.


  1. I have 14 months of CSRS OFFSET (October 1985 – December !987). I have 34 years with US Postal Service and went out on approved FERS Disability through the Postal Service. I was persuasively convinced that regular retirement will be beneficial. However, I never received a refund check for the 14 months in CSRS. II called OPM regarding the issue and was informed it will be added to my Social Security Account when I turn 62. What is the likelihood of receiving a refund check with all interests applied?

    Thank you for your time.

    • The percent of pay that was attributable to the CSRS portion of your CSRS Offset deductions was identical to the amount your would have contributed to the retirement fund if you were a FERS employee. When you were converted to FERS, the deduction amounts didn’t change. Therefore, you aren’t entitled to a refund.

Leave A Reply