Date of final separation


Q. I am a CSRS employee who plans to retire on my 55th birthday on May 3, 2012 with 32 years of service.  This is the middle of a pay period. Do I list May 3 as my “date of final separation” on the appropriate form and do I have to report to work (or be on leave status) on that day, or is that the first day that my retirement begins?  In other words, am I a retiree or an employee on May 3?

A. You will be 55 on the day before your birthday. On May 3, you will be 55 and one day old. Therefore, you can retire at the close of business on May 2, if you want, and be on the annuity roll on May 3. Talk to the folks in your personnel office to make sure that they both understand what you want to do and understand that you can do it.


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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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