CSRS and Social Security

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Q. I am a federal employee with 42 years of CSRS service. Will I be afforded the opportunity to receive Social Security benefits when I reach the age of 65?

A. You would only be entitled to a Social Security benefit if you had worked outside the government and earned at least 40 Social Security credits. However, because you worked under CSRS – a retirement system where Social Security taxes weren’t deducted from your wages – you’d be subject to the windfall elimination provision of law. The WEP would reduce that benefit unless you had at least 30 years of substantial earnings under Social Security.  

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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 fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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