CSRS and retirement


Q: I was employed under CSRS and retired in 2008. From about 1967 to 1971 I paid Social Security taxes while working for the government as a Veterans Administration trainee. I later bought back this time. I am 63 and I have almost enough quarters to qualify for Social Security. I understand that any Social Security would be reduced by the windfall elimination law. Will the time I bought back also count toward my Social Security calculations (effectively therefore being counted for both CSRS and Social Security? If I don’t collect Social Security until my full retirement age (in my case, age 66 since I was born in 1947), will my Social Security also be subject to government pension offset, since I also get CSRS ? I have provided a survivor pension to an individual with an insurable interest. Will his Social Security be reduced because of my CSRS?

A: You already earned Social Security credits when you worked as a trainee. By making a deposit for that time, you will get credit for that time in determining your eligibility to retire and in your annuity computation. Regardless of when you apply for a Social Security benefit, you will be subject to the windfall elimination provision. Providing an annuity to someone with an insurable interest will have no affect on that person’s right to other benefits, including Social Security.


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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