Social Security credits


Q. I am under CSRS. My service computation date is Nov. 13, 1983. I have 34 Social Security quarters paid. Can I pay the remaining Social Security quarters in lump sum, or do I have to work to contribute? Will this be to my advantage?

A. The only way you can get Social Security credits is through earning from wages or self-employment. If you earn six more credits, you’ll be entitled to a Social Security benefit. However, because you are receiving an annuity from a retirement system where you didn’t pay Social Security taxes, you’ll be subject to the windfall elimination provision. The WEP will reduce but not eliminate your Social Security benefit because you’ll have fewer than 30 years of substantial earnings under Social Security.


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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