SES retirement


Q. Do the retirement benefits for SES employees differ in any way from non-SES employees?

A. No. Your annuity would be calculated in exactly same way. The only difference in benefits might be in your lump sum payment for unused annual leave. SES employees have a higher leave carryover ceiling than other employees, 720 hours vs. 240.


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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


  1. According to your statement, a Senior Executive Service (SES) employee under the FERS system has his or her retirement calculated at 1% per year of his or her average high-three, just the same as a career employee at GS-7. I’m glad you cleared that up. We thought, for some odd reason, that SES employees’ retirements were calculated at 1.7% per year once they vested with five years at the SES level. We’re glad to know that a 20-year SES will only receive 20% of his or her high three as a retirement annuity once he or she turns 62.

  2. Wow, that’s a big surprise to me. Many of our field officers thought SES employee will get 100% of his current pay as a retirement annuity.

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