OPM errors


Q: I read the Federal Times article in the Jan. 10, 2011, edition and have a question about redeposits. I was a federal employee from April 1990 to October 1992 (2.5 years). I returned to federal service in October 2002 and have been a federal employee since that time (slightly more than eight years). My service computation date on my Earnings and Leave Statement is April 20, 2000. I am a FERS, general schedule employee. My question is how do I know if I need to make redeposit contributions? I understand that if I withdrew my retirement contributions then I would need to make redeposits. However, I don’t remember whether or not I made contributions in the first place and if I did, whether or not I withdrew those contributions when I left federal service in 1992. I already checked my Employee Personal Page; however, my E&LS do not go back that far and unfortunately all of my original documents were lost during a move. I hesitate to send an inquiry to OPM, as it seems they already have their hands full dealing with this situation. I plan to retire in February 2026 when I have my MRA and 25 years federal service, but now I am concerned that date may be delayed due to my lapse in service.

A: Since you have plenty of time, I suggest that you start by calling the National Personnel Records Center at 314-801-9250. They can have your records sent or faxed to you. If you discover that you did take refund of your retirement contributions, Public Law 111-84 changed the rules so that you would now be allowed to redeposit that money plus accrued interest. However, OPM has yet to revise the form you’ll need to apply to do that. Periodically check with your personnel office to learn if the new form is available. When you do send it in, OPM will be able to tell you what you owe.


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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