Q. I am 40 years old and have seven years of federal service under FERS. Is it worth my time to keep on working three more years so I’ll qualify for the MRA+10 benefit?

A. Even if you had 10 years of service, you couldn’t retire under the MRA+10 provision because you wouldn’t have reached your minimum retirement age, which is 57. However, because you have at least five years of creditable service, you could leave government at any time. If you didn’t ask for a refund of your retirement contributions, you could apply for a deferred annuity. If you did that before age 62, your annuity would be reduced by 5 percent for every year (5/12ths of 1 percent per month) that you were under age 62.


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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. Elaine Lumsden on

    In order for a FERS deferred annuity to be payable at the MRA with a reduction, there is a 10-year service requirement. With less than 10 years the deferred is only payable at age 62. REF: 5 CFR 842.212 Deferred retirement

  2. How would I know it I am eligible to receive a pension from the Postal Service I worked eight years, and do not remember getting a lump sum when I left. Is there a way of looking up my name in the pension files?

  3. I am in the exact same situation as Gail Barto. I worked at the USPS for 8 years (1988-1996). I don’t remember getting anything (paperwork) when I resigned. I did cash out my tsp though. Is that the lump sum retirement you are talking about?

    • The only paperwork you would have gotten when you left was a copy of the Standard Form 52 separating you from the service. The only lump sum payment you would have been entitled to was for any unused annual leave.

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