Law enforcement retirement


Q. I was appointed in 1992 at age 43 to my current position, an approved “secondary” law enforcement position within the judicial branch. I just completed my 21st year in the position and am retiring in January. Despite being in an approved law enforcement position, I am not in the LE retirement plan but rather regular FERS. Because the agency decided to hire me when I was beyond 37 years old, can they now say that because I was over 37 at time of appointment, I am not eligible for law enforcement retirement?

A. Your age has nothing to do with it. Because you didn’t begin your career in a primary law enforcement position and spend the required amount of time in it before moving to a secondary position, you aren’t, as you have stated, in a law enforcement position for retirement purposes. As a regular FERS employee, you are covered by those rules when it comes to retirement eligibility and the way your annuity will be computed when you retire.


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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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