Resigning and keeping FEHB?


Q. I am turning 50 in two months, with over 23 years of continuous federal service. I want to resign to pursue other career options. If I elect a reduced pension, e.g. high-3 x .23 x reduction percentage, will I have the option to continue my Federal Employees Health Benefits? How is the reduction percentage calculated? Is it reduced 5 percent for each year under age 60 or age 62?

A. Unless your agency offers you an opportunity to retire early via the Voluntary Early Retirement Authority, you wouldn’t meet the age and service requirements to retire. If it did, you would be able to retire, have no age reduction in your annuity, and continue your FEHB coverage. If it didn’t, your only option — other than waiting until you were eligible to retire on an immediate annuity — would be to resign and apply for a deferred annuity at age 60. Deferred annuitants aren’t eligible to re-enroll in the FEHB.


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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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