Q. I am a FERS employee and have more than 650 hours of annual leave and over 2,000 hours of sick leave. I am 58 years old with 28 years of FERS service this year. Would I be able to cash out my annual leave when I stop working at the end of this year if I deferred my retirement until age 60 so I would not get penalized by 5 percent a year for retiring before 30 years of service?
A. If you leave government for any reason, you will receive a lump-sum payment for your unused annual leave. If you leave and later apply for a deferred retirement, you could reduce or eliminate the age penalty for being under age 62; however, you would receive no credit for your unused sick leave in the computation of your annuity.