Initial placement in CSRS and then moved to FERS


Q. I began Navy federal employment Dec. 6, 1986, just at the change from CSRS to FERS.  This start date, however, is before the requirement that employees be placed in FERS, which I believe is Jan. 1, 1987.  My initial appointment SF50 says I am CSRS at appointment, but I was moved at a later date into the FERS system, citing a change in retirement plan.  I just noticed this when looking through my personnel records for a re-investigation of security clearance.  I was never notified or gave approval to a change, except that this SF50, which came Jan. 8, 1987, changed my system on Jan. 1, 1987 without my really being aware.  Because of my start date, do I have any reason to believe that I should have been in the CSRS system all along?  Could this change to the FERS system be challenged at this late date?

A. There is no reason to believe that you should have been in CSRS all along. Because you were first hired after Dec. 31, 1983, you were automatically covered by CSRS and Social Security. Then, because you had fewer than five years under CSRS, when FERS became effective on Jan. 1, 1987, you were required by law to be converted to FERS.


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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

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