Q. I am hoping to leave service at 59 years old with 25 years of service. I was planning to postpone my annuity start date until I was 60. My understanding is if I postpone and do not defer my annuity, I could resume as if I just left service. I would be entitled to health insurance and my supplement until age 62; if I deferred I would be ineligible for either. I believe the words “postpone” and “defer” are not the same, though are similar in meaning. Do I need to meet my minimum retirement age to qualify for a postponed retirement?
A. A deferred retirement is one where you leave government before being eligible to retire and apply for an annuity when you meet the eligibility requirements. A postponed annuity is one where you are eligible to retire under the MRA + 10 provision but defer the receipt of your annuity to a later date to reduce or eliminate the 5 percent per year age penalty. Deferred annuitants are entitled to nothing other than their annuity. Postponed annuitants may resume their FEHB and FEGLI coverage when they finally retire, but aren’t entitled to the special retirement supplement.