Military credit for firefighter position


Q. I was in the Marine Corps for 9½ years. I have been working as a public relations specialist with the Veterans Affairs Department for two years. I am applying for an assistant fire chief position with VA based on my experience in my volunteer fire department. If I got this position, what retirement plan would I fall into and would my military or VA time be credited?

A. If you were hired into a firefighter position, one subject to the more generous retirement provision, none of your previous service (military and civilian) would be creditable toward the 20 years needed to retire as a firefighter. It would only be added to those 20 years and computed at the standard rate. Note that none of your military service would be creditable under any circumstance unless you made a deposit to the civilian retirement system.


About Author

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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