CSRS versus FERS


Q. My husband starting working for the Department of Defense in August 1984. He was put into the CSR Offset. He had four years of military service, and he immediately paid the deposit for civilian service credit. Effective Jan. 1, 1987, he was automatically put in FERS.  Does the military service he bought back count for creditable civilian service? If yes, then shouldn’t he have remained in CSRS, since he would have had more than five years of civilian service before Jan. 1, 1987? He had no previous civilian service, other than military service, before he was hired in 1984.

A. Yes, the active-duty service for which he made a deposit is considered creditable service. No, he shouldn’t have been left in CSRS because he hadn’t been a CSRS employee for five years before FERS came online.


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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 fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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