Browsing: vested

Break in service and vested time

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Q. I am a 29-year-old federal employee and I may have to move at some point in next few years because of my husband’s work or if I go back to school. I have been working for 2½ years and I am starting to build up my Thrift Savings Plan (all L2050; if I leave, I am hoping to return to a job in the federal government at some point). I am wondering how vesting works for both TSP and my FERS annuity. Will I have to work a consecutive five years to keep both before I can leave, or…

Health benefits after retirement

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Q. I am a 51-year-old FERS employee whose minimum retirement age is 56. I will have over 30 years of service when I reach the minimum retirement age.  A couple of years ago, I went under my wife’s health plan.  We incorrectly assumed that she needed five years to become vested and that we could just stay under her plan when we retired (as with FERS). However, she is a Non-Appropriated Funds Defense Department employee and would need 15 years. I am picking up my Federal Employees Health Benefits insurance again so that I will have five years under the…

Vested time

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Q. If I retire from the Veterans Affairs Department with less than 10 years’ service but am vested, what are my options for receiving that retirement? I started with VA at 56 years and 10 months and will be vested on Feb. 16 for three years. If I retire any time before I complete 10 years, which would be at 66 years and 10 months of age, how would I get that money back? I am under the impression I have to be with the VA for 10 years before I would receive a monthly retirement. Am I right or…

Military buyback

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Q. I served for 13 years and four months in the active-duty Air Force after graduating from a service academy. After taking a job in the airline industry, I continued serving in the Air Force Reserve for another 10 years. I turned 60 in March and started drawing reserve retirement pay in April. I am considering employment as a Federal Aviation Association air safety inspector when I retire from my airline job, perhaps this year. I’ve been told by a friend at the FAA that all of my active-duty time plus my time at the service academy will count toward…

Reservist anticipating federal job offer

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Q. I am a Navy reservist anticipating a civilian federal job offer soon. 1. How much will the active duty buy-in be for 16 years, 10 months of active duty, and where can I find a calculator? 2. What is the minimum number of civil service years I need to complete for a retirement? (I am age 52). 3. What is my minimum retirement age? A. The first thing you need to do is complete OPM Form RI 20-97, Estimated Earnings During Military Service, and mail it to your military finance center with a copy of your DD 214, Report…

Military buyback

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Q. I have been offered an opportunity in FERS. I retired from the Navy Reserve in 2009 with 25 years of creditable service. I will not be drawing this pension until age 58 (credit for post-9/11 active-duty lowers from 60). How would making a deposit for military service work? Like active-duty retirees, would I then waive my reserve retirement? Would the decision simply be a calculation to see which retirement would yield the biggest pension? I retired as an O-5 and would be entering FERS at grade 13. I am 49 years old and would work until at least 62.…

Railroad buyback

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Q. In 1985-87, I worked for the railroad and I was paying into FERS. I left without being vested in the system. Now I have completed five years in FERS. Am I able to buy the railroad retirement time of two years and apply it to my FERS? I called the railroad retirement system and they said the federal money I contributed was sent to Social Security. A. Unfortunately, no.

Resuming creditable service

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Q. I have been working for the federal government for just over two years. I am planning on moving in the next few months. I have applied to federal jobs, as well as private-sector jobs and have, so far, heard back from the private-sector jobs. I read that the Thrift Savings Plan is vested at three years and that employees are entitled to retirement benefits after five years. If I were to leave the federal system at this point, would I be able to return to the system in the future and “restart,” as it were, at my two-year mark?…

Refund of retirement contributions

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Q. I started working for the government in 2008 and resigned for personal reasons this year. I was told by one representative at the Office of Personnel Management that because I vested more than three years, I am eligible for a refund of retirement I paid into FERS, as well as monies the government paid. I was then told by another rep that that is not true, that I can only get the money I invested into retirement. Can you please tell me which on is true? A. You can only get a refund of your retirement contributions. No one…

Repay withdrawn funds and re-enroll in CSRS?

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Q. I worked for the Postal Service for two years and eight months, and left in the early 1970s to raise my child. At that time, I withdrew my contributions. When I returned to federal service (not the post office) in 1987, I was told I was not vested in CSRS and therefore had to be enrolled in FERS. I was credited with my post office service, so my service computation date is Dec. 7, 1984, rather than February 1987, when I was hired. I would like to know if I should have been offered the opportunity to repay my withdrawn…

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