Catch 62


Q. Recently, I contacted the Office of Personnel Management to get an official ruling on the “one-time check” at age 62. This check occurs when a CSRS retired person turns 62. OPM cannot provide in writing that this “one-time check” is official. In my case, I will not have 40 credits when I turn 62, so I will not qualify for Social Security. Because I will not qualify for Social Security, I do not expect to have my CSRS pension reduced. What if I become eligible (obtain 40 credits) sometime after I turn 62?

I would like to have something more official than an OPM employee telling me over the phone that he or she thinks it is a one-time check. Can you shed some light on this often misunderstood “one-time check”?

A. The “one-time check” is correct. You’ll find the official word on “Catch 62” at


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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