Military buyback


Q. I’m 52, and military retired with 20 years of service. I’m a federal employee. Would it be possible for me to retire at age 56 if I buy back some or all of my active-duty years?

A. If you have at least five years of actual FERS service, were born in 1953 through 1964, make a deposit for your active-duty service, and waive your military retired pay, you could retire at age 56.


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  1. I’m doing it. You get your base pay over the entire career, which in my case was about $300k. Take 3% of that. Mine was about $8k. That becomes the payback amount but there’s a caveat – you have to cover the interest. My total with interest came to $18k but allowed me to bypass the age penalties and also get the Social Security Supplement. 40 years at the high 3 gave me about $40k MORE than the military and FERS retirement, and I will recoup the initial $18k in the first year. GO FOR IT!

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