CSRS-FERS conversion refund?


Q: I am a former federal employee. I joined federal service in 1981. I worked with the Immigration and Naturalization Service before transferring to the State Department in July 1982. I came in under the Civil Service Retirement System. In 1985, I was automatically transferred to the Federal Employees Retirement System without my knowledge.

Some employees who were transferred to FERS received a refund for their CSRS benefits. I never received a refund, and now I am under FERS. The Employee Benefits Information System is not showing that I contributed to CSRS. Can you please let me know if I a due a refund.

A: Because you had fewer than five years of coverage under CSRS, you were automatically converted to FERS when it became effective on Jan. 1, 1987. As a result, that CSRS service became FERS service. Therefore, you would be entitled to a refund of any contributions you made to the retirement fund that exceeded 1.3 percent, plus interest. You’ll need to go to your personnel office and work with them to confirm that you have a valid claim. If you do, they can help you apply for the refund.


About Author

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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