Marriage and benefits changes


Q. I am a CSRS employee with 30 years of service. If I marry a retired federal employee, will this reduce my monthly retirement benefits? Also, in the event of death, are we entitled to each other’s benefits?

A. Marrying either a federal employee or retiree would not affect your retirement annuity. Whether you would be eligible for each other’s survivor benefit would depend entirely on whether you elected to provide such a benefit and accepted the reduction in your own annuity to pay for 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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