FMLA leave and retirement


Q. I have a little more than 300 hours of sick leave and have approved FMLA sick leave. I am eligible for retirement with 31 years of service and am 59. Can I use FMLA sick leave for three months consecutively and put in for retirement effective at the end of the three months?

A. Since the federal civilian government doesn’t have a provision for terminal leave, you’d have to have a legitimate reason for using the FMLA leave and you’d have to clear your retirement at the end of that period with your agency.


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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


  1. Jacqueline Cray on

    I am 62 yrs old and was planning on retiring from job of 27yrs. I recently was injured at home and am on FMLA. I am using my EIB of 260 hrs. But I would still like to retire in next two months. Am I able to qualify for continue COBRA medical insurance or if i retire during FMLA loose that benefit?

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