Disability retirement and SSDI


Q. I was forced to take medical leave because I slipped and fell in the ice and snow. The injury caused a severe illness, and eventually my agency separated me on disability retirement. Later I was awarded Social Security Disability Insurance. They offset my disability annuity by the same amount, so I have to pay the Office of Personnel and Management back the same amount I received from SSDI. It seems like I shouldn’t have applied for SSDI if they were going to deduct the amount of the SSDI from my disability benefit. What do you think?

A. The law is clear. As a disability retiree who was approved for SSDI, for the first 12 months you’d receive 60 percent of your high-3 average salary minus 100 percent of your Social Security disability benefits. After the first 12 months, you’d receive 40 percent of your high-3 minus 60 percent of your Social Security disability benefits. If you are still disabled at age 62, your disability annuity would be converted to a regular annuity, which would be computed as if you had worked to age 62.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.


  1. i applied for medical retirement at aged 50 with 30 yrs of service. I am now 52 years old, my question is, if the doctor think that i can go back to work and i reach 56 years old, can i apply for a regular retirement?

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