Q. I was hired in May 1983 as a full-time GS-5 career conditional employee. I have always been a full-time employee with the federal government. I am a GS-12 and have not left civil service during my career. My SF-50 has always indicated that I am classified under CSRS.

I understand that I was hired about six months before the government stopped registering new employees in CSRS. Would any circumstances cause my retirement system to be coded incorrectly? Is there any reason I should not be enrolled in CSRS? Recently, another employee hired in December 1983 was found to be incorrectly classified in CSRS. Human resources found he should have been under FERS or CSRS Offset. I am concerned that I may be in the wrong retirement system because I was hired six months before January 1984 as a career conditional employee.

A. Because you were hired under CSRS, the only retirement system in existence at the time, and have been continuously employed, you are in the correct retirement system. Only those first hired, rehired or converted from another retirement system after Dec. 31, 1983, and before Jan. 1, 1987, would have been properly placed in the CSRS Interim system (CSRS and Social Security). On or after Jan. 1, 1987, they would either pass the five-year test and be placed in CSRS Offset and offered the opportunity to transfer to FERS; or, if they didn’t pass the test, be automatically placed in FERS.


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.

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