Retirement pay gap


Q. I’m due to retire in less than three years and I find the articles about OPM processing time for calculating retirement pay fascinating. What I have not seen discussed is how and when is the retirement pay gap paid?  If I only receive 80 percent of my retired pay for six months while the Office of Personnel Management is calculating my full retirement, what happens to the other 20 percent for that six-month period. I’m assuming I do get those funds. When? How? Is it paid in a lump sum in addition to my fully calculated retirement pay in the seventh month, or some other method?

A. The amount you didn’t receive because you were on interim pay would be paid in full, retroactive to the first monthly payment you were due after you retired. That money would usually be included in the first monthly payment after your annuity is finalized.


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  1. I retired a couple of years ago and here is some information some may find useful. I notified my agency of my forthcoming retirement seven months in advance, and I kept track of all paperwork, emails and who I spoke with and when. I maintained on-going contact with all OPM personnel involved and I completed all of my required retirement paperwork immediately including all beneficiary and insurance forms. Two years previously I had completed all forms involved to integrate my military time to my FERS time. This included my Air Force retirement via USAF and DFAS and paid the conversion and interest. Still, when I retired my first retirement check was about $250 and I immediately notified all OPM parties and only then did they realize they forgot to incorporate my 21 years of military time! I had frequent contact with OPM and still it took from April 2011 until August 2011 to get my correct amount of retirement pay. And, as mentioned I did receive all of my back pay. Moral: Complete and submit ALL of your paper work ASAP, maintain a file of all correspondence and emails, as well as phone calls and whom you spoke with and when and follow up often.

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