Browsing: Creditable service: FERS

Opting out of FERS

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Q. Is there any way for me to opt out of the Basic Benefit offered in FERS? I just started at work today as a GS employee. I did not realize that the Basic Plan will require me to contribute 4.4 percent of my income to a retirement plan that pays 1 percent per year served. Please check my math. Does that mean I will have to draw retirement for a minimum of 4.4 years before I break even on these payments? That is without considering any growth rate on these funds.

Best date to retire

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Q. I have 24 years of service in federal law enforcement. Nov. 25 will make 25 years government service. I am 52 and will retire this year. I have heard and read the best dates for FERS to retire in 2014 are May 31, June 28, Nov. 29 and Dec. 28. I’ve read no matter which day in the month a FERS employee retires, the employee’s retirement becomes effective the first day of the following month. The first annuity check will then be dated the first day of the following month. If I retire on Oct. 18, the end of…

Finding Your High-3

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The “high-3” is an essential element in the formula used to calculate your annuity. But what does the term high-3 mean? And how do you figure out what yours is? The high-3 defined Your high-3 is the average of your highest rates of basic pay over any three consecutive years of creditable civilian service, no matter when they occur in your career, with each pay rate weighted by the length of time it was received. That three-year period starts and ends on the dates that produce the highest average pay. It starts on the first day that leads to the…

Credit for state service

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Q. I have been employed in New York and I’m under the NYS Employee Retirement System. Would any portion of my New York civil service time count as creditable service in the FERS system if I were to gain employment under the federal retirement system? A. No, it would not.

FERS after resignation

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Q. I resigned from the federal government May 21 with a retirement SCD date of March 22, 1988, so I am vested in FERS. When I elect to apply for a refund of my FERS, do I get everything that I have in my FERS account or just the portion that I put in? A. You’d get what you contributed to the retirement system, plus accrued interest.

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In my last column (read it here) I wrote about the age and service requirements for Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) employees to retire. In this one, I’ll focus on Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) employees. FERS age and service requirements to retire Immediate retirement Age 62, with 5 years of service. Age 60, with 20 years of service. Minimum retirement age (MRA), with 30 years of service. MRA, with 10* years of service. Early retirement Age 50, with 20 years of service. Any age, with 25 years of service. Deferred retirement Age 62, with 5 years of service. Age…

Military retired pay, FERS, VA disability

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Q. I retired from the military with a 40-percent VA disability. I am now a government employee under FERS. If I buy back my military time and then retire under FERS, will I still receive my VA disability payments and, if so, will the VA payments be deducted from my FERS retirement in the same way as they are deducted from my military retirement today? A. While you would have to waive your military retired pay when you retire from your civilian position, you wouldn’t have to waive your VA disability payments. They would have no affect on your FERS…

CSRS or FERS

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Q. I had 10 years of employment covered under CSRS, then resigned. I came back in 2007 under FERS. I also have two years, five months and 21 days military service. Would it be to my benefit to change to CSRS offset. I plan on retiring May 2015 when I will be 62 with 20 years of service. A. You can’t change your coverage now. You are a FERS employee who will have a CSRS component in his annuity. If your active-duty service was performed before you first became a federal employee (or while you were covered by CSRS), you…

Retirement penalty?

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Q. I am FERS employee. I am 60 and this September I will have 29 years of service. Will I be penalized if I retire before I turn 62 and with only 29 years? A. No, you won’t. You can receive an immediate, unreduced annuity at age 60 with as few as 20 years of service.

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