FERS disability retirement


Q. I have 23 years and 11 months in the Postal Service. I am going to be 60 on June 26. I have not been able to work since June 21, 2011, and have been on leave without pay. I applied for Social Security disability and was turned down. My assessment was inconclusive, leaving out the reason for my disability. So I have a lawyer  who states I have and excellent case, which he says may not be resolved until the beginning of 2013. About a month ago, I put in for early retirement due to financial hardship. Later, I was informed by the Office of Personnel Management that my disability retirement was approved. So I contacted the agency and reverted to my disability request, which was approved. I was told I am entitled to the supplemental income even if it’s disability retirement down the line if I received Social Security disability. Is the supplemental income terminated because I have to turn over Social Security benefits to OPM until I am 62?

A. I think you misunderstand how FERS disability retirement works. During the first 12 months, you’ll receive 60 percent of your high-3 average pay minus 100 percent of any Social Security disability benefit. After that, up to age 62, you’ll receive 40 percent of your high-3 minus 60 percent of any Social Security disability benefit. At age 62, your disability annuity would be converted to a regular annuity. Disability annuitants are never entitled to receive the special retirement supplement.


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.

Leave A Reply