Q. I have read conflicting views on whether the Voluntary Separation Incentives Payments (VSIPs) and annual leave payments are subject to the earnings test. Other sites report under Office of Personnel Management rules monies you earn in the year in which you retire are not subject. Does this mean if I retire in March and lump sum payment for annual leave and a VSIP is paid that year, it does not count against my supplement?

Q. I retired from federal service in 2006 under the CSRS program. My first wife received half my pension until her death. In 2013 I remarried a federal retiree who is under the FERS program. If one of us pass first, will the survivor be eligible for any of our spouse’s pension?

Q. I’ve just received notice that I am eligible for VERA at the U.S. Postal Service and adding up my years found that I’ve been with the Postal Service for 19 years and 6 months. However, I just turned 53 and I bought my military time of 3 years when I first entered the Postal Service. Retirement would be possible if I qualify for SRS. Do I qualify for the SRS? And If I do, when does it go into effect?

Q. I’m retiring and have been enrolled in the FEHB program for over five years. Can I stay on BCBS Federal coverage along with Part A Medicare for as long as I please? I’m thinking of keeping BCBS instead of Medicare Part B or any other supplemental program. Is that a good idea?

Q. I am still working and wanted to cancel my dental, but missed open season. I called the benefits line for my dental plan (Concordia), as I plan to retire next year and don’t want to take it into retirement. They told me that I could only cancel it during open season even then. That OPM rules do not allow it for their plan and that “retiring” is not a qualifying event. Even if my husband died, he would only be taken off the “family” plan, but I couldn’t drop it then. I am confused.

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